Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 2.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.

To James Berdan [1]

James Berdan, Esq. Springfield,
My dear Sir: July 10. 1856

I have just received your letter of yesterday; and I shall take the plan you suggest into serious consideration. I expect to go to Chicago about the 15th., and I will then confer with other friends upon the subject. A union of our strength, to be effected in some way, is indispensable to our carrying the State against Buchanan. The inherent obstacle to any plan of union, lies in the fact that of those germans which we now have with us, large numbers will fall away, so soon as it is seen that their votes, cast with us, may possibly be used to elevate Mr. Fil[l]more.

If this inherent difficulty were out of the way, one small improvementPage  348 on your plan occurs to me. It is this. Let Fremont and Fillmore men unite on one entire ticket, with the understanding that that ticket, if elected, shall cast the vote of the State, for whichever of the two shall be known to have received the larger number of electoral votes, in the other states.

This plan has two advantages. It carries the electoral vote of the State where it will do most good; and it also saves the waste vote, which, according to your plan would be lost, and would be equal to two in the general result. But there may be disadvantages also, which I have not thought of. Your friend, as ever

A. LINCOLN---

Annotation

[1]   ALS, IaDaM.