I found a few more words for one of this week’s birthday boys—
|Rutherford B. Hayes, our 19th President, (1877-1881).|
Hayes was an upright, conscientious, and better-than-average President, but the professional politicians of the Republican party disliked him, and his wife’s refusal to serve wine at White House dinners brought ridicule from Washington society. He was uneasy in the presidency, and, alone of presidents since Polk, absolutely refused to be considered for a second term.
(Samuel Eliot Morison, The Oxford History of The American People, Oxford University Press, New York, 1965. Photograph from Theodore E. Burton, American Statesmen, Second Series: John Sherman, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1908.)
Turns out– and everyone I’m reading says Hayes knew nothing of this– Hayes’ election was “stolen!”
The election results from four states were disputed because each had submitted two sets. Three of theses states, South Carolina, Florida, and Louisiana were still under carpet-bagger rule and the carpet-bagging election boards had thrown out thousands of votes for Samuel Tilden, the Democratic candidate. Guess what Congress did to fix the problem? That’s correct. A commission was formed! Here’s Morison:
“‘Visiting statesmen’ were sent to the disputed Southern States; and there seems no doubt that a deal was made by the Republican and Southern Democratic leaders, by virtue of which, in return for their acquiescence in Haye’s election, they promised on his behalf to withdraw the garrison and to wink at the non-enforcement of Amendment XV… .”
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
So there you have a few more words.