Want to save this letter now that you've found it?
It's easy - just create your own collection of letters after signing up for a free account.
Thursday, 14th January, 1847.
I had a conversation with Col. Benton about General Taylor's mismanagement of the war; and about a publication in the New Orleans papers of the contemplated plans of the campaign. This could only have gotten to the public through General Scott, who was necessarily entrusted with its confidentially before he set out from Washington for the seat of war. He has from his inordinate vanity or from some other cause given it out, so that it has gotten before the public. The truth is neither Taylor nor Scott are fit for the command of the army in the great operations in progress and which are contemplated. To add to my embarrassment, and it does, greatly do so, Congress does not strengthen the executive arm. Nearly half the session has passed and they are engaged in debates about slavery and party politics, and have passed none of the essential measures which I have recommended as indispensable to the vigourous and successful prosecution of the war. With a large nominal majority in both houses, I am practically in a minority. The several cliques and sections of the Democratic party are manifestly more engaged in managing for their respective favourites in the next Presidential election, than they are in supporting the government in prosecuting the war, or in carrying out any of its great measures. The only corrective is in the hands of the people.
- James Polk