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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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2449. ELECTIONS (Presidential, 1796), Dispute over.—
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2449. ELECTIONS (Presidential, 1796), Dispute over.—

It seems possible, that the
Representatives may be divided. This is a difficulty
from which the Constitution has provided
no issue. It is both my duty and inclination,
therefore, to relieve the embarrassment,
should it happen: and in that case, I pray you,
and authorize you fully, to solicit on my behalf
that Mr. Adams may be preferred. He has always
been my senior, from the commencement
of my public life, and the expression of the
public will being equal, this circumstance ought
to give him the preference. And when so
many motives will be operating to induce some
of the members to change their vote, the addition
of my wish may have some effect to preponderate
the scale.—
To James Madison. Washington ed. iv, 150. Ford ed., vii, 91.
(M. Dec. 17, 1796)