Election of 1848 Slavery Becomes a National Issue


In 1848 a new political party wars founded- The Free Soil Party. The party pledged to end the spread of slavery. They nominated Martin Van Buren as their Presidential candidate. The Democrats nominated Lewis Cass as their presidential candidate who supported the idea that each territory should decide for itself whether to allow slavery. the Whigs nominated Zachary Taylor the American General who had led the war against Mexico. The major issue in the election campaign was slavery, and this centered on the issue of whether to allow the areas acquired because of the Mexican War to allow slavery. Although Van Buren did not carry any states the 10% of the vote that he received was enough to insure Taylor's victory. Taylor won 139,000 more votes then Casss. His victory was national carrying both Northern and Southern states. For the first time however, slavery had become an election issue.