In all the trying positions in which I shall be placed, and doubtless I shall be placed in many trying ones, my reliance will be placed upon you and the people of the United States - and I wish you to remember now and forever, that it is your business, and not mine; that if the union of these States, and the liberties of this people, shall be lost, it is but little to any one man of fifty-two years of age, but a great deal to the thirty millions of people who inhabit these United States, and to their posterity in all coming time. It is your business to rise up and preserve the Union and liberty, for yourselves, and not for me. I desire that they shall be constitutionally preserved.
What say today's political class to this? It does not matter, what matters, as Lincoln remarked, is what we say - and do.
For more on Lincoln and our future, visit Patriot Week and America's Survival Guide.