Humanities › History & Culture Quotes from Martin Van Buren Van Buren's Words Share Flipboard Email Print Daderot / Wikimedia Commons / CC0 1.0 History & Culture American History U.S. Presidents Basics Important Historical Figures Key Events Native American History American Revolution America Moves Westward The Gilded Age Crimes & Disasters The Most Important Inventions of the Industrial Revolution African American History African History Ancient History and Culture Asian History European History Genealogy Inventions Latin American History Medieval & Renaissance History Military History The 20th Century Women's History View More By Martin Kelly History Expert M.A., History, University of Florida B.A., History, University of Florida Martin Kelly, M.A., is a history teacher and curriculum developer. He is the author of "The Everything American Presidents Book" and "Colonial Life: Government." our editorial process Martin Kelly Updated October 12, 2019 Martin Van Buren was the eighth president of the United States having served from 1837 to 1841. Following are quotes from the man known as the "Little Magician." He was president during the Panic of 1837 and blocked the admission of Texas as a state. Quote by Martin Van Buren "As to the presidency, the two happiest days of my life were those of my entrance upon the office and my surrender of it." "Unlike all who have preceded me, the Revolution that gave us existence as one people was achieved at the period of my birth; and whilst I contemplate with grateful reverence that memorable event, I feel that I belong to a later age and that I may not expect my countrymen to weigh my actions wi th the same kind and partial hand." Van Buren's Inaugural Address March 4, 1837 "The people under our system, like the king in a monarchy, never dies." "On receiving from the people the sacred trust twice confided on my illustrious predecessor, and which he has discharged so faithfully and so well, I know that I can not expect to perform the arduous task with equal ability and success." Van Buren's Inaugural Address March 4, 1837 "It is easier to do a job right than to explain why you didn't." "For myself, therefore, I desire to declare that the principle that will govern me in the high duty to which my country calls me is a strict adherence to the letter and spirit of the Constitution as it was designed by those who framed it." Van Buren's Inaugural Address March 4, 1837 "There is a power in public opinion in this country-and I thank God for it: for it is the most honest and best of all powers-which will not tolerate an incompetent or unworthy man to hold in his weak or wicked hands the lives and fortunes of his fellow-citizens." Stated in the Judiciary Committee on January 8, 1826.