Under these circumstances the desire to precipitate the pace and to reach the end with a rush possessed many persons of the nervous and eager type. They could not spur General Grant, so they gave their vexatious attention to the President, and endeavored to compel him to open with the Confederate government negotiations for a settlement, which they believed, or pretended to believe, might thus be attained. But Mr. Lincoln was neither to be urged nor wheedled out of his simple position. In his message to Congress he referred to the number of votes cast at the recent election as indicating that, in spite of the drain of war, the population of the North had actually increased during the preceding four years. This fact shows, he said, “that we are not exhausted nor in process of exhaustion; that we are gaining strength, and may, if need be, maintain the contest indefinitely. This as to men. Material resources are now more complete and abundant than ever. The natural resources, then, are unexhausted, and, as we believe, inexhaustible. The public purpose to reestablish and maintain the national authority is unchanged, and, as we believe, unchangeable. The manner of continuing the effort remains to choose. On careful consideration of all the evidence accessible, it seems to me that no attempt at negotiation with the insurgent leader could result in any good. He would accept nothing short of severance of the Union,—precisely what we will not and cannot give. His declarations to this effect are explicit and oft-repeated. He does not attempt to deceive us. He affords us no excuse to deceive ourselves. He cannot voluntarily re-accept the Union; we cannot voluntarily yield it. Between him and us the issue is distinct, simple, and inflexible. It is an issue which can only be tried by war, and decided by victory. If we yield, we are beaten; if the Southern people fail him, he is beaten. Either way, it would be the victory and defeat following war.