April 16, 2024

Why Wasn’t There a President Samuel J. Tilden?

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The Presidential Election of 1876 was won by Samuel J. Tilden, a Southern Democrat sympathetic to Southern States who were imposed with puppet governments after the Civil War. The Republicans, in charge of the post Civil War reconstruction and biased against the Southern States were not willing to allow a Southern Democrat into the office of President and thus ordered Federal military troops to change the results of the election in favor of Republican Rutherford B. Hayes by using voter fraud, bribery, forgery and perjury.

On November 8 of that year, Tilden had won the election with 4.3 million votes over the 4 million votes for Hayes and 193 electoral votes over [Hayes’] 173 electoral votes. After having many Democratic votes thrown out for various made up reasons, the final result of the election was left in the hands of J. Madison Wells, the election board chairman for the State of Louisiana. Realizing what was going on, Wells demanded bribes for his votes from both political parties. After giving the election to Hayes, Wells received a large compensation package from the Republican party.

With Wells final support for Hayes, the Democrats cried foul and threw the election results into the hands of a special Congressional commission stacked with Republicans who then favored Republican Hayes. The Democrats, still upset, protested in Congress but agreed to stop contesting Hayes election to the Presidency in exchange for Federal troops being removed from the Southern States.

If they could do it then, why couldn’t it happen today?

Image from Stock Exchange used under the Standard Restrictions explained at the link.

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