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Unformatted text preview: gress Challenges Johnson’s Authority*
- Congress was not too thrilled about Johnson’s plan,
especially b/c many of the planters had begun
establishing black codes on the local and state levels.
Consequently, the Republican majority simply decided to
directly challenge Johnson by refusing to admit the exConfederates.
- Congress justified its new role in Reconstruction by
pointing out that the Constitution had given them the
main power to admit new states. Still, there were many
other Constitutional issues to sort out, such as the everpresent question whether the Union had been broken or
- Lincoln believed it had not; Johnson agreed but
admitted the people responsible for the rebellion had to
pay [in theory]; moderates favored Congressional
supervision; and radicals argued that the Union was
broken and the South was a conquered nation.
- Anyway, all of Congress knew that they had to have an
alternative to Johnson’s program ready for the 1866
elections. Since a conservative coalition was out of the
question after Johnson and the Democrats insisted that
Reconstruction had already ended, it all came down to
the moderate and radical Republicans.
- First, they attempted another compromise w/Johnson in
spring 1866 – the Johnson policy would continue w/only
2 modifications: extension of the life of the Freedmen’s
Bureau and the passage of the Civil Rights Bill of 1866,
which would force Southern courts to practice equality
before the law by allowing the federal gov’t to take over
unfair cases [but only in public acts of discrimination]. But
131 this flopped when Johnson vetoed both bills, revealing
his racism. The bills overrode his veto and passed
*The Fourteenth Amendment and the Beginning of
- After that, all chances of cooperation between Johnson
and Congress were dead, so Congress went ahead and
began its own program, urged on by the increasing
reports of anti-black violence in the South.
- The result was the Fourteenth Amendment, whi...
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2014 for the course APUSH AP United taught by Professor Orban during the Fall '10 term at Harrison High School, Harrison.
- Fall '10