reconstruction Essay

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Andrew Johnson took office after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln in 1865. He was a Southern Democrat from Tennessee, when he became president, the Civil War had ended and reconstruction was in its beginning stages. Johnson was then faced with the same problems Lincoln had -- the challenge of mending a broken nation, yet there was a definite difference in the ways Johnson and Lincoln approached the problems of Reconstruction. Johnson was not one of our best or brightest presidents, he did not care about his public appearance and he was not good at making decisions. One of the most illogical decisions Johnson made as president was to start a new reconstruction plan, before his death Lincoln already had a plan set out. Yet Johnson…show more content…
This was not a good idea for Johnson because he already had a lot of enemies because he was a radical democrat from the South. The south loathed him because he was a democrat and the North loathed him due to his lenient treatment of the South. The North wanted to deal with the South brutality yet Johnson handed out many pardons to the Confederates, pushed to restore civilian control in the Southern states and shied away from implementing voting rights for blacks. From the beginning, Johnson was at odds with the Radical Republicans, who favored radical reconstruction of the defeated Southern states, including military rule and distribution of both land and voting rights to blacks. Later these same people voted to impeach him.
Johnson believed that the government should be indulgent with the Southerners. Since that is how he felt he took the insinuative to make a proclamation of amnesty in May 1865, without giving the public any say in the matter. This angered a lot of Democrats and Northerners who felt that the South should not just be pardoned that they should be reprimanded. Then Johnson took it a step further by not only pardoning all of the southerners but, allowing them to have and form their own new governments. This allowed the south to have ex-confederate leaders to hold spaces in the senate, for example, Senator Alexander H. Stephens who was the vice president of the Confederacy.
At this point a lot of people were tried of Johnson as there
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