Mount Vernon January 8th. 1788
The various passions and medium by which men are influenced are concomitants of falibility — engrafted into our nature for the purposes of unerring wisdom; but had I entertained a latent hope (at the time you moved to have the Constitution submitted to a second Convention) that a more perfect form would be agreed to — in a word that any Constitution would be adopted under the impressions and Instructions of the members, the publications which have taken place since would have eradicated every form of it. . . .
To my judgment, it is more clear than ever, that an attempt to amend the Constitution which is submitted, would be productive of more heat, & greater confusion than can well be conceived. There are somethings in the new form, I will readily acknowledge, wch. never did, and I am persuaded never will, obtain my cordial approbation; but I then did conceive, and now do most firmly believe, that, in the aggregate, it is the best Constitution that can be obtained at this Epocha; and that this, or a dissolution of the Union awaits our choice, & are the only alternatives before us — Thus believing, I had not, nor have I now any hesitation in deciding on which to lean.
I pray your forgiveness for the expression of these sentiments. In acknowledging the receipt of your Letter on this subject, it was hardly to be avoided, although I am well disposed to let the matter rest entirely on its own merits — and mens minds to their own workings.