[MVB] to Smith Thompson, [July 1823]
It is difficult, if not impossible for one who is not acquainted with the views, & Combinations of the executive Power, to form a correct ^opinion^ or to give unqualified advice, respecting a particular appointment, which in itself may be not only expedient, but excellent; yet when viewed in connection, with other appointments, with which it may be combined, and of which it may form the only meritorious Part, it may be neither expedient, nor worthy of approbation. While this remark is justified by the views, and associations, disclosed by the late nominations made by the President; I do not, & cannot, for a moment hesitate, in renewing the opinion, and advice, formed after careful deliberation, and early and most sincerely communicated, that you ought to accept the Seat offered to you in the Supreme Court.
This Opinion and Advice, my dear Sir, are not changed by any thing that has since taken place between us. It is however due to the occasion, as well as to our long friendship, in the Expression of this Opinion & advice, to exclude every other executive measure, that may depend upon, or be combined with it, desiring to confine myself to the precise Case, which your friendship has submitted to mine.
Letters to & from
Mr. Van. Buren. Mr. Smh. Thomson JRK
Printed in King, Correspondence, 6:527.