Did the South Keep Lincoln Off the Ballot?

If you missed it, the Maine Secretary of State has decided to remove Donald Trump from the ballot in 2024.

This followed the Colorado Supreme Court decision that did the same, though after Trump appealed the decision to the Supreme Court, the Colorado Secretary of State placed Trump back on the Republican primary ballot.

The Supreme Court decided to hear the case today, as I predicted on Episode 897 of The Brion McClanahan Show back in November.

SCOTUS will rule in favor of Trump 5-4. Book it.

Regardless, because the Maine Secretary of State is a Democrat, several prominent conservative historians took to the media to blast the move. Predictably, Victor Davis Hanson labeled it a tactic of the “Confederacy”, because don’t you know Democrats in the South kept Lincoln off the ballot in 1860.

Except they didn’t.

Republicans kept Lincoln off the ballot in the South in 1860.

States did not print ballots before the 1880s. The Parties did all of the work, and without secret ballots, everyone knew who you supported. This allowed for voter intimidation–ask Democrats in Union States during the War–and also led to the eventual regulation elections.

Republicans bargained that they would not get a single vote in the South and therefore did not send any ballots to the cotton States. They were right, and thus Lincoln was skunked throughout the Deep South. He polled about 1% of the vote in Virginia and Kentucky, about two percent in Maryland, ten percent in Missouri, and about twenty percent in Delaware, but overall, as Michael Holt has shown in this excellent book, the election in the South was between Bell and Breckenridge, not Lincoln and Breckenridge.

While historically inaccurate, this type of logic could be used against Republicans in the North. Breckenridge wasn’t on the ballot in New York and New Jersey. Republicans didn’t keep him off the ballot. Democrats did, because Douglas men ran the Democratic Party in those States and refused to allow Breckenridge ballots.

Why didn’t Hanson and the rest of the historically ignorant trumpet this information?

Because it doesn’t fit their R good, D bad narrative. More importantly, it doesn’t allow them to run the South as the bogeyman thesis of American history and to virtue signal about their moral self-righteousness.

Blame Republicans. They never change.

I discuss the ballot issue on Episode 916 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

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