The Presidential Election of 1860

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gentlemanrob

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Well I personally think the separation of the Democratic Party hurt the party overall. John Bell tried to unite what was left of the Whig Party and Know - Nothing Party but by 1860 a majority of the former whigs had switched to either the Republican or Democratic parties.
 
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major bill

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The majority of the electoral were in the northern states. The Democratic party was not offering positions that would allow most of the voters in free states to support them. Note Douglas did not win a single free state and Lincoln did not win a slave state. I my opinion, the Democratic party could not win the presidency without offering the residents of the free states more than they did.
 

trice

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The majority of the electoral were in the northern states. The Democratic party was not offering positions that would allow most of the voters in free states to support them. Note Douglas did not win a single free state and Lincoln did not win a slave state. I my opinion, the Democratic party could not win the presidency without offering the residents of the free states more than they did.
Lincoln won with 180 Electoral votes, with 152 required to win. It is fairly simple to see how to turn that around: you just need to beat Lincoln in Pennsylvania (27 votes, which Buchanan won in 1856) and reverse one other State (any State at all, or just pick up 2 votes in NJ).

The easiest States to reverse are California (4 votes, Lincoln got 32.3%) and Oregon (3 votes, Lincoln got 36.2%). New Jersey split (7 votes, Lincoln got 48.1% of the popular vote and 4 Electoral votes)

Pennsylvania is hard to do because it is where the Morrill Tariff increase on iron and steel products is most important (along with parts of NJ). Lincoln lost in NJ where there was a fusion ticket against him, but had strong support where the Morrill Tariff was important.

To do that, you probably need a united Democratic Party in the Election instead of the fractured Democratic Party that Yancy, Rhett, and the Fire-Eaters engineered at the Charleston Convention. That Democratic Party has to propose some form of increase in the Tariff if they want to win in Pennsylvania -- in particular they need to address the concerns of the iron-and-steel business in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
 

trice

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I had posted the following in another thread and thought it had a place here:

If you compare the Electoral map of 1856 to 1860, it is pretty easy to see where Lincoln won. Here are the states where Lincoln got Electoral votes and Freemont did not:

Old States that switched (Buchanan in 1856, Lincoln in 1860)
  • California -- 4 votes, Buchanan 48.38%, Freemont 18.78% in 1856; Lincoln 50.7% in 1860. Lincoln added 31.92%
  • Illinois -- 11 votes,Buchanan 44.09%, Freemont 40.23% in 1856; Lincoln 50.7% in 1860. Lincoln added 10.47%
  • Indiana -- 13 votes, Buchanan 50.41%, Freemont 40.09% in 1856; Lincoln 51.1% in 1860. Lincoln added 11.01%
  • New Jersey -- 7 votes, Buchanan 7 votes, 47.23%, Freemont 28.51% in 1856, Lincoln 4 of 7 votes, 48.1% in 1860. Lincoln added 19.59%
  • Pennsylvania -- 27 votes, Buchanan 50.13%, Freemont 32.01% in 1856; Lincoln 56.3% in 1860. Lincoln added 24.29%
New States (did not vote in 1856, did vote in 1860):
  • Oregon -- 3 votes, Lincoln 32.3%
  • Minnesota -- 4 votes, Lincoln 63.4%
In 1856, Buchanan won with 174 Electoral votes, Freemont got 114, a total of 149 were needed to win. Democrats lost
In 1860, Lincoln won with 180 Electoral votes, Douglas got 12, a total of 152 were needed to win.

In 1860, Lincoln got 66 more Electoral votes than Freemont in 1856. The Democrats (the rest) got 51 less than Buchanan got in 1856.

In order for a united Democratic Party to win in 1860 they need to take 29 Electoral votes away from Lincoln.

Lincoln would probably have won in Minnesota no matter what.

California and Oregon, all you have to do is unite the opposition instead of splitting it. If the Democratic Party stayed united, the Democrats probably would have won both those states. That is a swing of 7 votes.

That leaves the Democrats needing 22 Electoral votes.


They could do that by winning both Illinois and Indiana (24 votes) or they could do that by winning Pennsylvania (27 votes).
  • Douglas/Breckinridge/Bell lost Illinois to Lincoln by 4,711 popular votes.
  • Douglas/Breckinridge/Bell lost Indiana to Lincoln by 5,923 popular votes.
  • Douglas/Breckinridge/Bell/Fusion won New Jersey to Lincoln by 4,523 popular votes (but lost the Electoral 4-3).
  • Douglas/Breckinridge/Bell/Fusion lost Pennsylvania to Lincoln by 59,618 popular votes.
If they want to win in Pennsylvania, they will need to address the protective tariff issue for iron and steel (which might also get them the votes to take Lincoln's New Jersey split away (4 votes). The adamant refusal to compromise on this issue probably cost the Democrats Pennsylvania and part of New Jersey whether they were united or not.

If they had remained united, they might have had an excellent chance to take Indiana and Illinois. That would have given them the Presidency.

At the end of the campaign Douglas -- believing he had already lost -- went South and tried to convince politicians there not to secede when Lincoln won. If he had been able to campaign with the assurance that a united South would back him, his chances of victory would have been much better. He would then have stayed in the North to campaign, increasing his chances in Illinois and Indiana
 
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Potomac Pride

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The Republicans won the Presidential Election of 1860 because of their party’s unity and the bitter divide within the Democratic Party. In addition, the rapidly growing antislavery feeling in the North upset many people as a result of the Dred Scott decision and other events. Furthermore, the Republican economic program appealed both to farmers (with homestead legislation) and to manufacturers and workers (with tariffs) far more than the Democratic economic policies adopted in response to the Panic of 1857. There was also public disgust at the corruption of Democrats, most notably those in the Buchanan administration.
 
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