Why wasn't secession about tariffs?

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wausaubob

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Except the entire federal budget as about $50M. So an individual family might about $7 per year in costs on tariff goods, and another $4 in added costs on protected goods. Unless you were invested in southern railroads, and buying rails and other equipment, tariffs weren't worth getting killed over. But if the real issue was the federal government should be bankrupt and weak, with no navy, no arsenals, no working post office, and no commercial bureaus, than tariffs would be a real issue.
 

wausaubob

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Buy of course, people in TX wanted the US army to be competent and people in MO wanted to get on with the national railroad project. So weaknesses in secessionist fever in areas away from the cotton belt reflect that only the cotton belt and the old south were against protective tariffs.
 
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wausaubob

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The history of the Confederacy suggests that the wealthy were against all taxes, on the wealthy. A tax in kind on food producers, a tax serfdom, was OK.
 

Potomac Pride

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Buy of course, people in TX wanted the US army to be competent and people in MO wanted to get on with the national railroad project. So weaknesses in secessionist fever in areas away from the cotton belt reflect that only the cotton belt and the old south were against protective tariffs.
The majority of protective tariffs were on manufactured items. Before the Civil War, most of the industry was located in the northern states and they wanted protection from foreign competition. The issue of protective tariffs was sectional and a source of controversy.
 

wausaubob

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Sure. But important parts of what considered the south, Texas, the Missouri steamboat business, and the Maryland railroad business, wanted a strong federal government that could pay its bills. And a lot of southerners wanted a shot at homestead land, too. So the people that wanted to bankrupt the federal government were a special interest.
 
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lurid

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The federal tariff was a source of controversy shortly before the Civil War. The Republican Party platform of 1860 contained an important plank to protect domestic industry from foreign competition. In the Presidential election of 1860, the passage of a new tariff bill to protect northern manufacturers was a key campaign pledge by Lincoln. The Morrill Tariff had passed the House of Rep. in 1860 and it was vehemently opposed by the southern states. In fact, Senator Robert Toombs of Georgia called it "the most atrocious tariff bill that ever was enacted, raising the present duties from twenty to two hundred and fifty per cent above the existing rates of duty." The tariff was an important issue in the election of 1860 and a major source of controversy.
But Buchanan was the one who signed the bill and he was a democrat. Seven of the states that would form the Confederacy seceded from the Union between December 1860 and February 1861, before the passage of the Morrill Tariff. The deep south had its mind made up that it was going to leave, which if they would have hung around the democrats could have had enough votes to block the bill. I'm sorry, tariffs were a peripheral issue that could have been dealt within the law, but the south knew Lincoln was anti-slavery and that's why they tried to leave.
 

trice

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The majority of protective tariffs were on manufactured items. Before the Civil War, most of the industry was located in the northern states and they wanted protection from foreign competition. The issue of protective tariffs was sectional and a source of controversy.
There were 4 sugar refineries in LA, according to a leading Fire-Eater in the 1850s. They appear to have been making a huge profit behind the wall of a protective tariff on sugar. So were the 1300 or so Louisiana planters (Braxton Bragg among them) who produced virtually the entire US sugar cane crop. None of them seem to have opposed the tariff on sugar as a matter of principle.

Rice was a big crop in South Carolina. In the late 1830s South Carolina rice planters discovered that rice from Java could be sold on the dock in Charleston for less than they wanted to charge for floating it downriver. They immediately began a campaign to get a protective tariff on rice passed in Washington -- which was implemented in the Tariff of 1842. I have never heard of any South Carolina rice planters opposing the tariff on rice as a matter of principle.

"The South" was more than happy to engage in protective tariffs when they saw it as a benefit to "the South". This is just normal political behavior where local interests favor themselves while opposing benefits for others far away.
 
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Potomac Pride

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But Buchanan was the one who signed the bill and he was a democrat. Seven of the states that would form the Confederacy seceded from the Union between December 1860 and February 1861, before the passage of the Morrill Tariff. The deep south had its mind made up that it was going to leave, which if they would have hung around the democrats could have had enough votes to block the bill. I'm sorry, tariffs were a peripheral issue that could have been dealt within the law, but the south knew Lincoln was anti-slavery and that's why they tried to leave.
Of course, slavery was a more important issue than tariffs as I previously stated. However, the southern states realized that a new protective tariff bill would eventually be passed because this was one of Lincoln's major campaign promises. In fact, the Morrill Tariff had already been approved by the House of Rep. before secession even began. When secession did begin, the tariff issue was even mentioned by several of the southern states in their secession documents.
 
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WJC

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***Posted as Moderator***
A reminder: Badgering- annoying, repetitive demands for answers to a question that has already been answered- is not permitted. Either accept or dismiss a member's response to your question and move on. Further, members are not required to answer every question or respond to every post. Please exercise good judgment and avoid conflict.
 

lurid

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Of course, slavery was a more important issue than tariffs as I previously stated. However, the southern states realized that a new protective tariff bill would eventually be passed because this was one of Lincoln's major campaign promises. In fact, the Morrill Tariff had already been approved by the House of Rep. before secession even began. When secession did begin, the tariff issue was even mentioned by several of the southern states in their secession documents.
Again, a democrat president signed the tariff as law but you keep trying to blame shift onto Lincoln. Next, you don't know that it would have been eventually passed, just like I don't if it would have been blocked if they would have stayed in voted on it. So what that tariff was mentioned by several of southern states, they could have voted on it and if they lost then they could have left, but left without voting. Seven of the states that would form the Confederacy seceded from the Union between December 1860 and February 1861, before the passage of the Morrill Tariff.
 

Potomac Pride

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Again, a democrat president signed the tariff as law but you keep trying to blame shift onto Lincoln. Next, you don't know that it would have been eventually passed, just like I don't if it would have been blocked if they would have stayed in voted on it. So what that tariff was mentioned by several of southern states, they could have voted on it and if they lost then they could have left, but left without voting. Seven of the states that would form the Confederacy seceded from the Union between December 1860 and February 1861, before the passage of the Morrill Tariff.
Buchanan was a northern Democrat from Pennsylvania and he favored the bill because of the interests of his home state. Pennsylvanians wanted tariff protection for their industry against foreign competition. I wasn't trying to shift the blame onto Lincoln. However, the 1860 Republican platform contained an important plank that advocated protection for domestic industry against foreign competition. The southern states were vehemently opposed to protectionist tariffs because they benefited northern industry at the expense of the south. After Lincoln was elected, he even stated that he would make a new tariff a priority if the bill did not pass by his inauguration date. In addition, the southern states began to secede even before Lincoln took office even though he promised that he wouldn't interfere with slavery in the states where it existed.
 
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lurid

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Buchanan was a northern Democrat from Pennsylvania and he favored the bill because of the interests of his home state. Pennsylvanians wanted tariff protection for their industry against foreign competition. I wasn't trying to shift the blame onto Lincoln. However, the 1860 Republican platform contained an important plank that advocated protection for domestic industry against foreign competition. After Lincoln was elected, he stated that he would make a new tariff a priority if the bill did not pass by his inauguration date. In addition, the southern states began to secede even before Lincoln took office even though he promised that he wouldn't interfere with slavery in the states where it existed.
Okay, but ever state that seceded from the Union in 1860-61 voted for Buchanan in the 1856 election.

It don't matter, they were entirely too anxious to leave without voting, and they could have voted it down. Please, you and I and the rest of the common sense world knows Lincoln had anti-slavery sentiments and those overtones scared the heck out of the deep south.

Bottom line, if the seven states that seceded before the law passed would have stuck around to vote then the benefit of the tariff issue would be issued appropriately, but they never did so all people like you can to do is speculate and pretend you understand the psyche, sensibilities and inhibitions of dubious people who have been deceased for 150 years.
 

trice

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Again, a democrat president signed the tariff as law but you keep trying to blame shift onto Lincoln. Next, you don't know that it would have been eventually passed, just like I don't if it would have been blocked if they would have stayed in voted on it. So what that tariff was mentioned by several of southern states, they could have voted on it and if they lost then they could have left, but left without voting. Seven of the states that would form the Confederacy seceded from the Union between December 1860 and February 1861, before the passage of the Morrill Tariff.
Just for reference: The 1st Morrill Tariff passed in the Senate by a vote of 25-14 on straight Republican-Democrat votes with 12 abstentions (9 Democrats, 2 Republicans and 1 Unionist from Maryland). Throw in the Senators from the first seceding states who were not present and the bill probably does not pass the Senate.

Note: Kansas had been admitted to the Union on January 29, but had not elected any Senators yet. With the missing southern Senators present, there is a chance Kansas would not have been admitted in early 1861 (probably through further legislative stall tactics if men like Hunter could manage it). The Kansas Statehood Bill passed the Senate 36-16 in January, so a bunch of Democrats voted for to bring Kansas in.
 

lurid

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The history of the Confederacy suggests that the wealthy were against all taxes, on the wealthy. A tax in kind on food producers, a tax serfdom, was OK.
Exactly. I need to research some more but I'm thinking the tariff would not have hurt the common man and would have just have affected the wealthy, which is called the "wealth effect."
 
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wausaubob

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Southern plantation owners did not believe that the national government should levy and collect taxes. https://rogerransom.com/uploads/Civil_War_In_Econ_Hist.pdf The theory was put to the test under war time conditions, and failed the test.
So they were like independent dukes and viscounts, who thought they could defy the monarch. But it turned out the mountains were not that high, and the imperial lord was not that far away.
:dance:😃😃😃😃
 
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