The election of Abraham Lincoln – a threat to South Carolina
Abraham Lincoln returned to politics with his inflamed speech outlining his arguments against slavery, opposed to the Kansas-Nebraska Act that was passed by Congress in 1854. The legislation opened lands to the possibility of the spread of slavery. In 1860 Lincoln was chosen by the Republican Party as their candidate.
He won the presidential election defeating the Northern Democrat Douglas, the southern democrat representative and the union candidate. His election was unacceptable to southern politicians, who viewed his political stands as a threat to South Carolina and other southern states. Factors that led the South to secede
Lincoln’s election as the 16th president of the US formed a pretext to the southerners and few other states seceding from the union. The slave system was viewed by the southerner’s as a more pro-southern system that gave them a stronghold across the nation’s territories. Following Lincoln’s election as president, Southern Carolina and six other cotton–growing states in the south seceded from the union, they declared themselves as ‘the confederate states of America. ‘. Attempts by Lincoln to hold the union together by force failed. Tensions between North and South increased which led to the American Civil War that broke out in April 1861.
The role of 1860 Election The 1860 election was critical to the political scenario that marked a substantial change in the existing political context. Abraham Lincoln went on to become the first republican who was elected purely by the strength of northern support. His election to power led to the seceding of South Carolina and other southern states fuelling tensions in the political stage. The Emancipation Proclamation that was announced by Lincoln in September 1862 and was put to effect in 1863, freed slaves in the territories that was not already in the control of the union.
As quoted by a researcher in a web article “The Southern army was forced to retreat, and for the first time the North got the upper hand” (David Maiden), the advancement of the union armies in the southern territory led to the freeing of all slave in the confederation,. The thirteenth amendment passed by Lincoln, led to the permanent abolition of slavery across the nation. Abraham Lincoln is undoubtedly one of the greatest presidents of the US, an eloquent speaker and a great leader. Saving the Union and freeing slaves are viewed as two great achievements of Lincoln.