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Special Message

May 26, 1830

To the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States.

GENTLEMEN: I think it my duty to inform you that I am daily expecting the definitive answer of the British Government to a proposition which has been submitted to it by this, upon the subject of the colonial trade.

This communication has been delayed by a confident belief that the answer referred to would have been received early enough to have admitted of its submission to you in sufficient season for the final action of Congress at its present session, and is now induced by an apprehension that although the packet by which it was intended to be sent is hourly expected, its arrival may, nevertheless, be delayed until after your adjournment.

Should this branch of the negotiation committed to our minister be successful, the present interdict would, nevertheless, be necessarily continued until the next session of Congress, as the President has in no event authority to remove it.

Although no decision had been made at the date of our last advices from Mr. McLane, yet from the general character of the interviews between him and those of His Majesty's ministers whose particular duty it was to confer with him on the subject there is sufficient reason to expect a favorable result to justify me in submitting to you the propriety of providing for a decision in the recess.

This may be done by authorizing the President, in case an arrangement can be effected upon such terms as Congress would approve, to carry the same into effect on our part by proclamation, or, if it should be thought advisable, to execute the views of Congress by like means in the event of an unfavorable decision.

Any information in the possession of the Executive which you may deem necessary to guide your deliberations, and which it may, under existing circumstances, be proper to communicate, shall be promptly laid before you, if required.


Andrew Jackson, Special Message Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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