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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;

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8815. VICE-PRESIDENCY, Notification of election.—
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8815. VICE-PRESIDENCY, Notification of election.—

I suppose that the choice
of Vice-President has fallen on me * * * I believe it belongs to the Senate to notify
the Vice-President of his election. I recollect
to have heard, that on the first election
of President and Vice-President, gentlemen
of considerable office were sent to notify the
parties chosen. But this was the inauguration
of our new government, and ought not to be
drawn into example. At the second election,
both gentlemen were on the spot and needed
no messengers. On the present occasion, the
President will be on the spot, so that what
is now to be done respects myself alone; and
considering that the season of notification will
always present one difficulty, that the distance
in the present case adds a second, not inconsiderable,
and which may in future happen
to be sometimes much more considerable, I
hope the Senate will adopt that method of
notification, which will always be least
troublesome and most certain. The channel
of the post is certainly the least troublesome,
is the most rapid, and, considering also that
it may be sent by duplicates and triplicates,
is unquestionably the most certain. Enclosed
to the postmaster at Charlottesville, with an
order to send it by express, no hazard can
endanger the notification. Apprehending,
that should there be a difference of opinion
on this subject in the Senate, my ideas of
self-respect might be supposed by some to require
something more formal and inconvenient,
I beg leave to avail myself of your
friendship to declare, if a different proposition
should make it necessary, that I consider
the channel of the post-office as the most
eligible in every respect, and that it is to me
the most desirable; which I take the liberty
of expressing, not with a view of encroaching
on the respect due to that discretion which
the Senate have a right to exercise on the
occasion, but to render them the more free in
the exercise of it, by taking off whatsoever
weight the supposition of a contrary desire in
me might have on the mind of any member.—
To Henry Tazewell. Washington ed. iv, 160. Ford ed., vii, 106.
(M. Jan. 1797)