Chapter

“Many Discordant Political Interests to Reconcile”

Michael F. Holt

in The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party

Published in print May 2003 | ISBN: 9780195161045
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199849635 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195161045.003.0012
“Many Discordant Political Interests to Reconcile”

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Optimism abounded among Whigs in the weeks following Rough and Ready's victory. They appeared to be ascending because of their triumps in the presidential, congressional, and gubernatorial elections of 1848, while Democrats plummeted in the opposite direction. Within a year of Zachary Taylor's victory, hopes raised by the Whigs' performance in 1848 would be dashed. Within four years, they would be routed by their supposedly discredited foe in the next presidential election. Within eight, the Whig party would totally disappear as a functioning political organization. Four years after that, the perpetuity of the Union itself would be in grave jeopardy, in no small part because of the Whigs' disintegration as “a great national party”. The combination of external challenge and internal division that would wrack the Whig party appeared even before Taylor's inauguration in 1849.

Keywords: Whig party; Democrats; Zachary Taylor; elections; politics; United States

Chapter.  17321 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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