Crisis of the House Divided: An Interpretation of the Issues in the Lincoln-Douglas Debates

By Harry V. Jaffa | Go to book overview
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Chapter VI
The Repeal of the Missouri Compromise II DID THE COMPROMISE OF 1850 "SUPERSEDE" THE MISSOURI COMPROMISE?

THE Appeal of the Independent Democrats in Congress to the People of the United States, which fired the train attached to the powder keg of anti-slavery passion in the free states, is reprinted in the Congressional Globe under the date of January 19, 1854. To it is appended a note, presumably added on or after January 23, since it responds to amendments to Douglas's revised Nebraska bill which were reported only on that date. The note, which follows, sets forth the bitter core of the controversy, thus:

The amended Nebraska bill, introduced by Mr. Douglas [i.e., the bill introduced as a substitute for the Dodge bill on January 4, 1854 ], was promptly printed at length in the Washington Sentinel. As printed, it did not meet the views of certain southern gentlemen, and it was then discovered that an important declaratory section, legislating into the bill the principles of the compromise [of 1850 ] had been omitted by a clerical error. Even after this remarkable clerical error had been rectified, the bill was unsatisfactory, and now Mr. Douglas proposes more amendments -- to divide the Territory into two: to charge the Treasury with the expense of two Territorial Governments; to strike out the clerical error section, and insert elsewhere in the bill a clause excepting from the laws of the United States, extended over the Terri

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