Andrew Johnson Impeachment Analysis

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The Civil War’s conclusion was just but the beginning of a reconstruction period that while remained militaristically peaceful, had a long, arduous road of rebuilding the union. Rising out of poverty in the south, Andrew Johnson, took office following Lincoln’s assassination and now faced the seemingly insurmountable task of mending a split nation. However after Johnson 's continuation of Lincoln 's approach to reconstruction, consisting of lenient policy regarding the South and widespread amnesty, radical republicans who favored stricter terms for the South were infuriated (Severance). Tensions between the two contradicting sides grew as neither parties were willing to compromise and the issue culminated in the impeachment of Andrew Johnson, …show more content…
In attempts to minimize contemplation when Congress convened, Johnson and his administration negotiated with the state governments to expedite the ratification of the thirteenth amendment, which would abolish slavery (“The Andrew Johnson Administration”). Georgia’s ratification of the amendment on December 6, 1865 fulfilled the three-fourths necessary for the amendment to become part of the constitution ("This Day in Georgia History"). Despite his unorthodox and occasional artful tactics, Johnson 's personal efforts to accelerate the ratification of the thirteenth amendment allowed a quicker and easier readmission of the …show more content…
His veto of the Freedmen’s Bureau Bill is perhaps of most prominence, and indicative of the extend of his other vetoes (Smith 15). The bill would “establish a Bureau for the Relief of Freedmen and Refugees” ("Law Creating the Freedmen 's Bureau"). In his veto of the bill, Johnson claims that “ the bill before me contains provisions which, in my opinion, are not warranted by the Constitution and are not well suited to accomplish the end in view” ("Veto of the Freedmen’s Bureau Bill"). He goes on to say that the bill offered the Bureau too much power, and that its land provisions were redundant given that the Constitution itself protected people to such measures. Lastly, he felt that the use of military, which was permitted by the bill, during a peacetime was inappropriate (Smith 15). Strong arguments can be made for both sides, but by the inherent design of the constitution, one person never holds excessive power. Checks and balances exist for this very reason, and if anything Johnson’s opposite policies to congress underscore the effectiveness of the system. After revision and a subsequent veto by Johnson, the passage of the bill was overridden by congress ("Veto of the Freedmen’s Bureau

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