Historian Forrest Mc Donald wrote of Washington: “In the crucial business of making appointments, several things worked in his favor.
He was a good judge of character, and the range of his acquaintances was wide, and the same was true of his principal advisers.
Passive voice often creates unclear, less direct, wordy sentences, whereas active voice creates clearer, more concise sentences.
To change a sentence from passive to active voice, determine who or what performs the action, and use that person or thing as the subject of the sentence.
But my knowledge of the characters of persons, through an extent of fifteen hundred miles, must be so imperfect as to make me liable to fall into mistakes: which, in fact, can only be avoided by the disinterested aid of my coadjutors.
I forbear to enlarge on the delicacy there certainly will be, in discharging this part of our trust with fidelity, and without giving occasion for uneasiness.“I have no wish which aspires beyond the humble and happy lot of living and dying a private citizen on my own farm.” Washington wrote: “I clearly foresaw the endless jealousies, and, possibly, the fatal consequences, to which a government, depending altogether on the good will of the people for its establishment, would certainly be exposed in its early stages.Besides, I thought, whatever the effect might be in pleasing or displeasing any individuals at the present moment, a due concern for my own reputation not less decisively than a sacred regard to the interests of the Community, required that I should hold myself absolutely at liberty to act, while in office, with a sole reference to justice and the public good.(Only after the adoption of the Twelfth Amendment in 1804 did electors vote separately and specifically for president and vice president.) The presidential election of 1800 provided Alexander Hamilton, former secretary of the treasury, with a dilemma: a tie between Thomas Jefferson, a man whose principles were in direct opposition to Hamilton's own, and Aaron Burr, a man Hamilton believed to have no principles at all.As the House of Representatives prepared to vote to break the deadlock, Hamilton conducted a furious letter-writing campaign to urge fellow Federalists to vote for Jefferson.Nothing but the critical situation of his country would have induced him to so hazardous a conduct.” Washington received notification of his election from John Langdon, president pro tempore of the Senate of his election as president on April 14.Two days later, he left Virginia for New York, arriving on April 23. Washington had been working on a suitable inaugural speech for some time.All I dare hope is that if, in executing this task, I have been too much swayed by a grateful remembrance of former instances, or by an affectionate sensibility to this transcendent proof of the confidence of my fellow-citizens, and have thence too little consulted my incapacity as well as disinclination for the weighty and untried cares before me, my error will be palliated by the motives which mislead me, and its consequences be judged by my country with some share of the partiality in which they originated.” Washington would have been even more reluctant to lead the country had he understood the running quarrel between the secretary of the Treasury and the secretary of State that he would be expected to umpire and on which he would eventually take sides.Washington wanted to set a good example by appointing the best people to his administration – so it was natural that Washington (57) would choose two of the most talented young Americans he knew – Alexander Hamilton (32) and Thomas Jefferson (46) to serve with him.George Washington Hamilton and Washington Jefferson and Washington Jefferson, Hamilton and the Cabinet The Debt and Assumption The Capital Dinner Deal Bank of the United States William Duer and Charges of Corruption Giles Resolutions Foreign Policy Disputes American Neutrality and Citizen Genêt Press Battles Reelection in 1792 and Attempted Rapprochement Retirements of Jefferson and Hamilton Philip Mazzei Letter Conclusion George Washington Ever the realist, George Washington did not seek the burdens of the Presidency.Indeed in 1789, Washington was very reluctant to accept the popular expectation that he would be the country’s first president.