Difference in Political Attitude
A striking political difference existed between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas with regard to their antagonistic views about slavery. Slavery was the most controversial issue during their time therefore was responsible for shaping the political landscape. At the time Douglas, a staunch supporter of slavery, was well known as opposed to his opponent Lincoln who despite being infamous strongly condemned the act. Throughout their political debates Douglas was proslavery while Lincoln held an antislavery view.
Douglas ‘view was Marjory advised by his past as a judge and prosecutor in which he believed in popular sovereignty. Douglas therefore believed that different states could freely be left to choose what was best for them and this would give the leeway to practice slavery in certain states. Lincoln, on the other hand was of the view that an antislavery policy needed to be adopted throughout the United States since divisions would weaken the unity experienced in the earlier years.
Results of Abraham Lincoln Debates
Abraham Lincoln debates are today thought to be the fiercest war of words that has ever existed in the history of the US. Although at first the debates were anticipated to be influential no one thought that they could shape the political culture of presidential candidates up to date. The momentous debates had both short term and long term effects. In the short term they helped Douglas capture the senatorial seat while in the long run they set a path for future political trends of the US, and marked the beginning of the end of slavery in the US.
The 1858 debates marked a major milestone in the history of the US leading to the genesis of major antislavery movements that saw slavery later abolished in the US. These debates which were captured both in visual and print media continue to influence political gatherings in the US in what is famously known as the presidential debates between various aspirants during campaigns.
Henry S. C. The American Destiny; The Lincoln-Douglas Debates," American Heritage; Regina Z. Kelly, Lincoln and Douglas.] Illinois University of Illinois Press 1998