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The Failure of the Constitution

            The Constitution, with however many good intentions it started out with, did contribute to the failure of the union it created. It was originally drafted with the intent of unifying the newly formed nation, the United States of America. The Constitution was effective in protecting the rights and ideals of the people. However, by 1850, the Constitution had become not only a point of sectional disunity, but it had influenced a split politically and morally between the North and the South. Although the Constitution was very efficient and effective in its early years, the flaw in it's wording was that of leaving several important issues open and unresolved, causing the eventual disunity and debate between the nation. The Constitution ultimately contributed to the failure of the union because of the issues that were not resolved, and as such it caused quite the controversy in the years leading up to the Civil War.
             One of the central unresolved issues of the Constitution was succession. It didn't occur to the creators of the Constitution that any state would ever wish to leave the union, and so therefore they did not address whether or not a state could secede from it. As a result of the Constitution's failure to address this, when the southern states wanted to leave the union, it was considered unconstitutional to use force or power to stop them. James Buchanan was in support of the right of a state or states to leave the union if they did not feel that they were being properly represented. He stated, in Document G, that "The Southern States, standing of the basis of the Constitution, have a right to demand this act of justice from the States of the North." Buchanan also spoke of the power of Congress to use force to keep the southern states in the union, saying that the power had never been bestowed upon congress. Abraham Lincoln opposed this view by not supporting the secession of the southern states.

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