American attorney, jurist, and Democratic politician (1789-1851) who served as Secretary of the Navy under President Jackson, Secretary of the Treasury under Jackson and Van Buren, and as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court from 1845 until his death. ALS, three pages on two adjoining sheets, 8 x 10, July 20, 1841. Letter to the Hon. John M. Niles from the "Senate Chamber," questioning the courage of President Tyler to veto the bank bill about to be passed by Congress. In part: "I can hardly answer your question in respect to the passage of the Bank bill or the veto. Before leaving home I thought from my knowledge of Tyler's character he would revert to every species of influence to deflect the measure, but yet had not the independence or nerve to veto it, if passed by the two Houses. After being here nearly seven weeks I am sorry to say, that I am but little wiser on this point. He gives assurances & promises enough, that he will veto this bill if it comes to him; yet he does not get credit for them with all of us—and it is strongly suspected he may if it passes, let it become a law…This would be perfectly characteristic and yet he may be pushed, kicked, driven with the Virginia lash into a veto—after all. This much is certain. Clay fears that he cannot get the bill through the Senate & has today laid it on the table…he means to intimidate Tyler as to a veto and his rebels in the Whig ranks of the Senate; and then carry the measure through our body & prevent the veto." Addressed on the integral leaf in Woodbury's hand, and franked in the upper right, "Free, Levi Woodbury." In fine condition, with a rusty circular paperclip impression to the top.
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