explained his war policies at length.


Stanton conveyed Lincoln's impatience to Sherman, who marched northward through the Carolinas. Meanwhile, the House of Representatives took up the 13th Amendment again. General Sherman's progress and apparent relentlessnes won the amendment some new votes, as did lobbying by Lincoln. "The passage of this amendment will clinch the cufflinks clearance whole subject; it will bring the war, I have no doubt, rapidly to a close," the president promised Rep. James Rollins of Missouri. Indeed, Lincoln was so pleased that he signed the approved measure, despite knowing that neither his signature nor his approval was constitutionally required. The Senate slapped the president's wrist a week later, passing a resolution asserting that "such approval was unnecessary."

Lincoln ignored the sanction. He happily told a crowd gathered beneath his White House window that the 13th Amendment pendants clearance was "a very fitting if not an indispensable adjunct to the winding up of the great difficulty" of the war. Once ratified by the states, he said, it would obviate concerns about the enduring validity of the Emancipation Proclamation, and would "remove all causes of disturbance" between the sections. He congratulated the Congress, the country and himself for "this great moral victory."

Morality could imply either righteousness or mercy the sword or the olive branch - and Lincoln still hadn't chosen between the competing principles when he delivered his second inaugural address in early March 1865. As if reflecting the profound weariness he felt, and perhaps reflecting too Mary Lincoln's earrings clearance fears that his days were dwindling, he confined himself to fewer words than any president since George Washington in 1793, when the Father of His Country had simply said thanks for reelection and let's get on with the job. Lincoln explained his terseness on the grounds that the war remained the overriding issue of public affairs, and that he had already explained his war policies at length.Yet he felt obliged to summarize what the momentous struggle meant. In language of superficial neutrality "All dreaded it; all sought to avert it," he said of the war - he nonetheless levied judgment against the rebellious South. "Both parties deprecated war, but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive, and the other would accept war rather than let it perish." In other words, the South attempted to murder the republic, the North simply to defend it.

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