Comment: A couple of comments about Grand Juries by Thomas Jefferson

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A couple of comments about Grand Juries by Thomas Jefferson

"A grand juror cannot carry on systematic persecution against a neighbor whom he hates, because he is not permanent in the office. The judges generally, by a charge, instruct the grand jurors in the infractions of law which are to be noticed by them; and our judges are in the habit of printing their charges in the newspapers." --Thomas Jefferson to Edmund Randolph, 1793. ME 9:83

"[If] the charges of the Federal judges... [invite] the grand juries to become inquisitors on the freedom of speech, of writing and of principle of their fellow citizens, perhaps the grand juries... may think it incumbent in their next presentment to enter protestations against this perversion of their institution from a legal to a political machine and even to present those concerned in it." --Thomas Jefferson to Peregrine Fitzhugh, 1797. (*) FE 7:137