"While Lincoln insisted that the Declaration of Independence applied to all, he also descended into bigotry, acknowledging the “physical difference” between whites and blacks. In the fourth debate, he went further.
“I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races,” he declared in Charleston, Ill., to robust cheers, “nor ever have been in favor of making voters of the negroes, or jurors, or qualifying them to hold office, or having them to marry with white people.” It was not the future emancipator’s finest hour." Abraham Lincoln
Not his finest hour? It was not, but Romney supporters can take heart from these words that so many wish Lincon had not uttered. Campaign speeches are not to be believed. They are sculpted by the ambitious to appeal to the tastes of audiences. Those audiences were in Illinois where there were no slaves. BTW, these words are not "lost." They have been in plain view but ignored by those who wish to think "Mistuh Lincum" a secular saint. No, actually most of the people who want that have never thought about anything.
I think Lincoln was always against slavery, and especially against letting it expand into the federally held lands which the North owned jointly with the South. At the same time I don't think Lincoln as president would have done anything to abolish slavery in the states where it was allowed until South Carolina foolishly forced his hand. The holocaust of the war changed his willingness to act on slavery as the butcher's bill became so high that it had to be justified by something more elevated in tone than forced re-integration of the seceded states. Would you want to die or have your son die to force South Carilona back into a Union where 150 years later the "natives"could still act like the charming but incendiary rascals that they remain?
In the course of writing my novel (3 volumes) "Strike the Tent," I have come to like Father Abraham as a man. He tried to work out a negotiated peace until well into 1865. It is unfortunate that the people of his time seem to have had no more common sense than those of our own. pl