Did the Governor of New York Horatio Seymour hurt the Union War effort?

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When the Civil War began New York was the state with the largest population and the Union needed the strong support of New York if the Union was to win the Civil War. At the start of the Civil War the governor of New York was Edwin Morgan who was a Republican and a supporter of Abraham Lincoln. Morgan's support was a real plus for the Union War effort. This changed in 1863 when Horatio Seymour, who was a Democrat, was elected governor of New York. Although Seymour officially supported the Civil War he was often considered the most prominent Democratic opponent of President Lincoln. Seymour was also against the Emancipation Proclamation. So did Governor Seymour hurt the Union war effort? It can not really help the Union war effort to have an anti Lincoln politician as governor of the Union largest state.
 

leftyhunter

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When the Civil War began New York was the state with the largest population and the Union needed the strong support of New York if the Union was to win the Civil War. At the start of the Civil War the governor of New York was Edwin Morgan who was a Republican and a supporter of Abraham Lincoln. Morgan's support was a real plus for the Union War effort. This changed in 1863 when Horatio Seymour, who was a Democrat, was elected governor of New York. Although Seymour officially supported the Civil War he was often considered the most prominent Democratic opponent of President Lincoln. Seymour was also against the Emancipation Proclamation. So did Governor Seymour hurt the Union war effort? It can not really help the Union war effort to have an anti Lincoln politician as governor of the Union largest state.
What direct evidence vid there that Seymour actually hindered the Union war effort?
Leftyhunter
 

major bill

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When was Seymour's election and inauguration relative to the NYC draft riots?
The NYC draft riots occurred while Horatio Seymour was governor.
What direct evidence vid there that Seymour actually hindered the Union war effort?
Leftyhunter
Seymour opposed the military draft and he attempted to find a way to satisfy those that opposed the draft. Some believed this helped bring on the New York City draft riots. Seymour also vetoed the bill that would have let New York soldiers vote in the 1864 presidential election. Some saw this as him not supporting the soldiers. Seymour' opposition to Lincoln caused some to question how committed Seymour was to the Union war effort. He was accused of having hidden sympathy with the Confedercy.

I have never seen where Seymour worked to undermine the Union war effort, but have not studied Seymour in any depth. I thought perhaps that one of our forum members with more knowledge of New York during the Civil War could add to this thread.
 
The NYC draft riots occurred while Horatio Seymour was governor.

Seymour opposed the military draft and he attempted to find a way to satisfy those that opposed the draft. Some believed this helped bring on the New York City draft riots. Seymour also vetoed the bill that would have let New York soldiers vote in the 1864 presidential election. Some saw this as him not supporting the soldiers. Seymour' opposition to Lincoln caused some to question how committed Seymour was to the Union war effort. He was accused of having hidden sympathy with the Confedercy.

I have never seen where Seymour worked to undermine the Union war effort, but have not studied Seymour in any depth. I thought perhaps that one of our forum members with more knowledge of New York during the Civil War could add to this thread.
Both houses of the 87th and 88th (January 1, 1863 - December 31, 1865) NY State Legislature were controlled by Republicans who also had war Democrats ally with them on many issues. I'm not sure if the governor was powerful enough to control or override them.
 
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In 1864 election, even with 11 southern states gone and the war going rather well, 45% of the Union voters indeed still voted against Lincoln.

Though not seeing how a Governor who questioned Lincoln or the war hurt the war effort. But not surprising a bloc of 45% of voters will have representation, thats how a representative republic works.
 

Bruce Vail

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The NYC draft riots occurred while Horatio Seymour was governor.

Seymour opposed the military draft and he attempted to find a way to satisfy those that opposed the draft. Some believed this helped bring on the New York City draft riots. Seymour also vetoed the bill that would have let New York soldiers vote in the 1864 presidential election. Some saw this as him not supporting the soldiers. Seymour' opposition to Lincoln caused some to question how committed Seymour was to the Union war effort. He was accused of having hidden sympathy with the Confedercy.

I have never seen where Seymour worked to undermine the Union war effort, but have not studied Seymour in any depth. I thought perhaps that one of our forum members with more knowledge of New York during the Civil War could add to this thread.
 
Seymour wanted the draft suspended in New York claiming that the draft was unconstitutional and that draft quotas for his state were "glaringly unjust."

Lincoln responded:

His Excellency Horatio Seymour Executive Mansion,
Governor of New-York Washington, August 7, 1863.

Your communication of the 3rd. Inst. has been received, and attentively considered.

I can not consent to suspend the draft in New-York, as you request, because, among other reasons, time is too important.

By the figures you send, which I presume are correct, the twelve Districts represented fall into two classes of eight, and four respectively. The disparity of the quotas for the draft, in these two classes is certainly very striking, being the difference between an average of 2200 in one class, and 4864 in the other. Assuming that the Districts are equal, one to another, in entire population, as required by the plan on which they were made, this disparity is such as to require attention. Much of it, however, I suppose will be accounted for by the fact that so many more persons fit for soldiers, are in the city than are in the country, who have too recently arrived from other parts of the United States and from Europe to be either included in the Census of 1860, or to have voted in 1862. Still, making due allowance for this, I am yet unwilling to stand upon it as an entirely sufficient explanation of the great disparity.

I shall direct the draft to proceed in all the Districts, drawing however, at first, from each of the four Districts, towit: the second, fourth, sixth, and eighth, only 2200, being the average quota of the other class. After this drawing, these four Districts, and also the seventeenth and twentyninth, shall be carefully re-enrolled, and, if you please, agents of yours may witness every step of the process. Any deficiency which may appear by the new enrollment will be supplied by a special draft for that object, allowing due credit for volunteers who may be obtained from these Districts respectively, during the interval. And at all points, so far as consistent, with practical convenience, due credits will be given for volunteers; and your Excellency shall be notified of the time fixed for commencing a draft in each District.

I do not object to abide a decision of the United States Supreme Court, or of the judges thereof, on the constitutionality of the draft law. In fact, I should be willing to facilitate the obtaining of it; but I can not consent to lose the time while it is being obtained. We are contending with an enemy who, as I understand, drives every able bodied man he can reach, into his ranks, very much as a butcher drives bullocks into a slaughter-pen. No time is wasted, no argument is used. This produces an army which will soon turn upon our now victorious soldiers already in the field, if they shall not be sustained by recruits, as they should be. It produces an army with a rapidity not to be matched on our side, if we first waste time to re-experiment with the volunteer system, already deemed by congress, and palpably, in fact, so far exhausted, as to be inadequate; and then more time, to obtain a court decision, as to whether a law is constitutional, which requires a part of those not now in the service, to go to the aid of those who are already in it; and still more time, to determine with absolute certainty, that we get those, who are to go, in the precisely legal proportion, to those who are not to go.

My purpose is to be, in my action, just and constitutional; and yet practical, in performing the important duty, with which I am charged, of maintaining the unity, and the free principles of our common country.
Your Obt. Servt. A. LINCOLN.

Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, Volume 6, pp. 369-370
 
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