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On the other hand, some of our friends expressed a hope that Lincoln will be elected on these grounds: “That McClellan has at West Point and Ticonderoga declared for war till the Union is restored, and can accept peace only with reunion; that he can raise an army and money to carry on the war, but Lincoln cannot; that the Republicans will sustain him in making war, and, in addition to them, many Democrats; that he will infuse new life, hopes and vigor into the war party; that foreign nations will wait longer on him than on Lincoln before intervening or recognizing the South; that the platform is in accordance with McClellan's speeches and does not commit him to peace, except on the basis of Union; that Vallandigham betrayed them for the promise of a seat in McClellan's Cabinet; that Lincoln's election will produce revolution in the Northwest--McClellan's will not.” Such are the arguments briefly stated of the peace men who support or who oppose McClellan's election.

Perhaps our true policy is to keep our own counsels, withhold any further declaration of purpose, and let the so-called peace party of the North have no excuse for laying its defeat at our door, if Lincoln should be re-elected. By declaring for Lincoln rather than McClellan, we may divide the friends of the latter into a position of hostility to us as implacable and bitter as that of the Republicans. Yet, since reading McClellan's letter of acceptance, I see reason for preferring him to Lincoln.

I am induced to think, from the intimations of the peace papers and of individuals, that there will be a considerable minority of the Democracy of the North who will not vote for McClellan, and that they may put up some other candidate. His nomination has not been greeted as cordially as was anticipated, and the Republicans are evidently in better spirits than they were before the Convention at Chicago. Perhaps the fall of Forts Gaines and Morgan and of Atlanta may have caused the apparent change of feeling in the North. It is thought those events caused McClellan to ignore the platform, or the construction given it by the unconditional peace men, in his letter of acceptance. I remember that Dr. Mackay said, during his visit here, about three weeks since, that the Northern people were as unstable and capricious as spoiled children, and that although a large majority seemed resolved on peace, the capture of Richmond or Atlanta would cause most of them to renew their shouts for war. Certainly they are greatly encouraged by those captures and seem persuaded that the end of the “rebellion” is near at hand.

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Henry B. McClellan (8)
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