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Quotes from James K. Polk

Polk's Words

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"No President who performs his duties faithfully and conscientiously can have any leisure."

"Foreign powers do not seem to appreciate the true character of our government."

"There is more selfishness and less principle among members of Congress...than I had any conception of, before I became President of the U.S."

"In executing this power by levying a tariff of duties for the support of Government, the raising of revenue should be the object and protection the incident. To reverse this principle and make protection the object and revenue the incident would be to inflict manifest injustice upon all other than the protected interests."

"Well may the boldest fear and the wisest tremble when incurring responsibilities on which may depend our country's peace and prosperity, and in some degree the hopes and happiness of the whole human family."

"I cannot, whilst President of the United States, descend to enter into a newspaper controversy."

"I prefer to supervise the whole operations of Government myself rather than entrust the public business to subordinates and this makes my duties very great."

"Well may the boldest fear and the wisest tremble when incurring responsibilities on which may depend our country's peace and prosperity, and in some degree the hopes and happiness of the whole human family."

"Although in our country the Chief Magistrate must almost of necessity be chosen by a party and stand pledged to its principles and measures, yet in his official action he should not be the President of a party only, but of the whole people of the United States."

"The world has nothing to fear from military ambition in our Government. While the Chief Magistrate and the popular branch of Congress are elected for short terms by the suffrages of those millions who must in their own persons bear all the burdens and miseries of war, our Government can not be otherwise than pacific."

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