Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Kansas-Nebraska Act in the News!

They [Obama and Democratic congressional leaders] passed a health care bill that was the most unpopular major legislation passed by Congress since the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854. That law, which allowed settlers to decide whether to allow slavery in these new territories, resulted in the disappearance of one major political party, the demotion to minority status of the other and led to civil war. The effects of Obamacare will not be so dire, though some longtime Democratic officeholders may think so on November 3.

About the illustration, entitled Our Political Snake-Charmer, published February 11, 1860:
British political cartoon shows Stephen Douglas with snakes labeled with the political positions: Old Line (Whig), American, So. American, Anti-Lecompton, Democrat, and Republican. Stephens says, "You perceive, ladies and gentlemen, that the creatures are entirely under my control. John Forney, a Democrat who had switched sides and become a Republican Lincoln supporter, says, "Hope the Brutes won't bite!"

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