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The Birth of the Republican Party

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1 The Birth of the Republican Party
Chapter 10, section 3 The Birth of the Republican Party

2 Horace Greeley Editor of New York Tribune Staunch abolitionist
Argues against popular sovereignty and in favor of violent resistance to slave catchers

3 Horace Greeley, continued
Frustrated with Whig Party’s shifting position on slavery March, 1855….urged people to join a new antislavery political party, the Republican Party Quote, p. 295

4 Slavery Divides Whig Party
Whig Party (founded in as a reaction against Pres. Andrew Jackson) Split over issue of slavery (northern “conscience” antislavery and southern “cotton” proslavery Whig candidate Winfield Scott loses to Democrat Franklin Pierce in 1852

5 The Know-Nothing Party
Earlier known as American Party Belief in NATIVISM: favoring native-born people over immigrants Primarily middle-class Protestants; had an anti-Catholic bias as they feared that Catholics would be influenced by the Pope on political issues

6 Know Nothing Party (2) Also earlier known as the Order of the Star- Spangled Banner Used secret handshakes and passwords Instructed to answer questions about their activities by saying, “I know nothing.” Supported a longer naturalization period for immigrants, thus delaying when they were able to vote Know-Nothing party captured the governorship of Massachusetts in 1854, however like the Whigs they were split on slavery. Northern Know-Nothings began to edge towards the Republican Party

7 Free Soil Party 1848, Free Soil party chose Martin Van Buren as it’s candidate Opposed extension of slavery into the territories No electoral votes won, but received 10% of the popular vote

8 Free Soil Party (2) Free-Soilers were not necessarily abolitionists
What Free-Soilers mostly objected to was slavery’s competition with free white workers (the extension of slavery directly threatened the free labor system)

9 Republican Party Feb. 28, 1854: opponents of slavery in the territories met in Wisconsin and recommended the formation of a new political party July 6, 1854: Republican Party was formally organized in Jackson, Michigan Opposed Kansas- Nebraska Act and wanted to keep slavery out of the territories

10 Who were the Republicans?
Included Free-Soilers, antislavery Whigs and Democrats and nativists Temperance supporters who wanted to prohibit the sale of alcohol Small farmers who wanted land grants in the west Commercial farmers and manufacturers who needed more internal improvements if they were to prosper….in general, very diverse

11 The Election of 1856 Candidates: John Fremont - R James Buchanan - D
Millard Fillmore - K/N Buchanan wins only 45% of popular vote but wins entire south except for Maryland Fremont carried 11/16 free states but came in second

12 Lessons of Election of 1856 Democrats could win the presidency with a national candidate who could compete in the north without alienating the south Know-Nothings, like the Whigs, were in a decline nationally Republicans were a political force in the North

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