August 24, 1869

Zanesville, Ohio

Now, the important question presented is, whether it is safe and wise to trust these amendments, for interpretation, construction and execution, to the party which, from first to last, has fiercely opposed them. The safe rule is, if you want a law faithfully and fairly administered, entrust power only to its friends: it will rarely have a fair trial at the hands of its enemies. These amendments are no exception to this rule.

What the country most needs, and what good citizens most desire, in regard to these great measures, is peace, repose. They wish to be able to rest confidently in the belief that they are to be enforced and obeyed. They do not want them overthrown by revolutionary violence, or defeated by fraud. They do not wish them repealed by constitutional amendments, abrogated by judicial construction, nullified by unfriendly legislation (state or national), or left a dead letter by non-action on the part of law-makers, or executive officers. Has the time come when the country can afford to trust the Democratic Party on these questions?