Letter from Zachary Taylor to Peter Sken Smith, Jan. 30, 1848.
BATON ROUGE, La., Jan. 30th 1848.
SIR: — Your communication of the 15th instant, has been received, and the suggestions therein offered duly considered.
In reply to your inquiries, I have again to repeat, that I have neither the power nor the desire to dictate to the American people the exact manner in which they should proceed to nominate for the Presidency of the United States. If they desire such a result, they must adopt the means best suited, in their opinion, to the consummation of the purpose; and if they think fit to bring me before them for this office, through their legislatures, mass meeting or conventions, I cannot object to their designating these bodies as whig, democratic, or native. But in being thus nominated, I must insist on the condition — and my position on this point to immutable — that I shall not be brought forward by them as
9the candidate of their party, or considered as the exponent of their party doctrines.
In conclusion I have to repeat that if I were nominated for the Presidency, by any body of my fellow citizens, designated by any name they might choose to adopt, I should esteem it an honor, and would accept such nomination, provided it had been made entirely independent of party considerations.
I am, Sir, very respectfully,
Your obedient servant,
PETER SKEN SMITH, ESQ., Philadelphia.