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[196] required at his hands. He took his stand for unpopular truth, at a time when a different course on his part could not have failed to secure him the favor and patronage of his party. In the great struggle with the Bank of the United States, his services had not been unappreciated by the President and his friends. Without directly approving the course of the administration on the question of the rights of the Abolitionists, by remaining silent in respect to it, he might have avoided all suspicion of mental and moral independence incompatible with party allegiance. The impracticable honesty of Leggett, never bending from the erectness of truth for the sake of that ‘thrift which follows fawning,’ dictated a most severe and scorching review of the letter of the Postmaster-General. ‘More monstrous, more detestable doctrines we have never heard promulgated,’ he exclaimed in one of his leading editorials. ‘With what face, after this, can the Postmaster-General punish a postmaster for any exercise of the fearfully dangerous power of stopping and destroying any portion of the mails?’ ‘The Abolitionists do not deserve to be placed on the same footing with a foreign enemy, nor their publications as the secret despatches of a spy. They are American citizens, in the exercise of their undoubted right of citizenship; and however erroneous their views, however fanatic their conduct, while they act within the limits of the law, what official functionary, be he merely a subordinate or the head of the post-office department, shall dare to abridge them of their rights as citizens, and deny ’

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