||Republicans bypass their
party’s front-runner, Senator William Henry Seward, to nominate
Abraham Lincoln for president. The Republican party takes a free-soil
stance on slavery by opposing its expansion into the territories,
while recognizing the institution’s legality in the South.
The Democratic party splits into two
sectional factions over the issue of slavery in the territories.
Southern Democrats want their party to endorse and Congress to enact a
slave code for the territories, in order to protect the institution
there. Northern Democrats oppose a federal slave code, preferring the
territorial residents to decide the issue of slavery without federal
sovereignty). Northern Democrats nominate
Senator Stephen Douglas for president, while Southern Democrats
nominate Vice President John Breckinridge.
A fourth presidential candidate, John
Bell, is nominated by the Constitutional Union party.
In the November presidential election,
Republican Abraham Lincoln garners a plurality of the popular vote and
a majority in the electoral college to win the presidency over his