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Summary Of The House Divided Speech

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Abraham Lincoln won the Republican nomination for Illinois Senate seat on June 16, 1858. Stephen Douglas would be his opponent in this battle to become the Senator. His nomination led to him delivering one of his most memorable speeches, the “House Divided” speech in which he precursors the looming Civil War. He starts the speech by addressing “Mr. President and Gentlemen of the Convention”, and states how it’s been too long since a policy has been passed with the intentions of ending the “slavery agitation”. He keeps pulling on this and then states his opinion on the matter, in which he says he doesn’t believe that the issue of slavery will be resolved until something tragic happens. I find it funny how Lincoln is able to predict this so well yet no one really seems to heed his warnings. That’s when he hits them with the famous part of the speech, “A house divided against itself cannot stand…”, and what he means by this is that the country can’t always be divided between slavery and free states. He says he doesn’t expect the country to fall apart though, rather he expects it to either get rid of slavery all together or the whole country to embrace slavery. He then calls out the skeptics and reminds them about the Dred Scott v. Stanford case and The Kansas-Nebraska act. Lincoln goes on to make the point that the Kansas-Nebraska Act and Dred Scott reversed the constitutional authority to ban slavery in the territories. The next part of the speech Lincoln discusses the
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