These debates were between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas.
This took place in 1858, one year after the Dred Scott decision.
Douglas accused Lincoln of saying that the US could not survive divided into free and slave states and that he had led a crusade against the peeps who had took part in the Dred Scott Decision. He also accused Lincoln of saying that 'negro's' were equal with white men and that "negro equality was an unalienable right".
What did he say about himself?
He said that he believed the exact opposite of Mr. Lincoln in that "in my opinion, our government can endure forever". Also that our government was established with the decision to allow the states to decide slavery for themselves and that he saw nothing wrong with that. The people have the right to make the laws regarding slavery in their own state.
does he say anything interesting or relevant?
He does talk about how "Your safety and ours depends upon both of us acting in good faith" which is an interesting bit of foreshadowing because the Northern and Southern suspicions of each other is what ultimately pushes them to civil war.
He also says that "Abolitionism had even so far divided this country" which ironically enough probably helps to divide the country because it makes the South suspicious of all abolitionists and makes the North defensive.
He mentions Henry Clay and Old Hickory in that they did their best to keep the Union together. He likens their battle against the bank and tariffs to their fight with abolitionists. This feeling of carrying on the tradition of protecting American values carries into the Civil War and is what pushes the South and the North to such extremes.
Bad things he said
"The moment the North obtained the maority in the House and the Senate...and could elect a President without the aid of Southern votes, that moment ambitious Northern men formed a scheme to excite the North against the South."
why was that bad?
Because this is a huge catalyst for the Civil War, both the North and the South were afraid of the other gaining too much power and this is only fueling those fears.
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