The Political Genius Of Abraham Lincoln

777 Words4 Pages
Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, written by Doris Kearns Goodwin, is a book describing in detail the early political career of sixteenth United States President Abraham Lincoln, as well as those of his rival candidates for the Presidential Election of 1860. It provides information regarding each individual 's personal views on controversial issues of the nation at that time, and additionally what various credentials each brought to his presidential campaign. (RUNNING AGAINST) popular and experienced opponents Edward Bates, William Henry Seward, and Salmon Chase, Abraham Lincoln had been considered the "underdog" candidate. However, it was Abraham Lincoln who was ultimately chosen to represent the Republican Party as…show more content…
In addition, Salmon Chase was able to further define his political prowess through the progression of the 1837 Matilda case, where the particular application of the Fugitive Slave Law was in question. In Chase 's opinion, a slave who had been recognized as private property in her home state of Missouri, then brought to Ohio by her master, was technically free in the state because the Fugitive Slave Law of 1793 had been rendered null by the early Northwest Ordinance of 1787. This ordinance stated that slavery would not be introduced to the new territory of the Northwest-- area that later evolved into the states of Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois. Chase explained that since the Northwest Ordinance was put into place, still recognized in the Northwest states, " 'Wherever [slavery] exists at all, it exists only in virtue of positive law . . . [and] can have no existence beyond the territorial limits of the state which sanctions it. ' The right to hold a person in bondage 'vanishes when the master and the slave meet together ' in a place, like Ohio, 'where positive law interdicts slavery '" (Goodwin 110). Chase would not succeed in winning the case, but as a result of his brilliantly delivered defense in the case, and the logical argument of the legality of the case which it had been centered around, Chase had introduced into his anti-slavery cause the additional support of lawful opposition to slavery. Furthermore, by straying from the common path of abolitionist reasoning, the argument that slavery was a immoral and inhumane, "Chase targeted a political audience, hopeful that abolition could be achieved through politics, government, and the
Open Document