Lincoln on Divisiveness Within the Republican Party

“I do not feel justified to enter upon the broad field you present in regard to the political differences between radicals and conservatives.  From time to time I have done and said what appeared to me proper to do and say.  The public knows it all.  It obliges nobody to follow me, and I trust it obliges me to follow nobody.  The radicals and conservatives, each agree with me in some things, and disagree in others.  I could wish both to agree with me in all things; for then they would agree with each other, and would be too strong for any foe from any quarter.  They, however, choose to do otherwise, and I do not question their right.  I too shall do what seems to be my duty.”

Remarks, Washington, D.C., October 5, 1863

 


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