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[222] States. I think it will be apparent that so far as secession before the inauguration of Mr. Lincoln was concerned, its immediate practical effect was to establish two governments instead of one, to execute substantially the same laws.

The secession of the cotton States was known, in the language of that day, as ‘secession per se,’ and it found small favor in the border slave States, especially as we shall see in Virginia. Conceding that the States had the right to secede, it was generally regarded as a right which should only be exercised for a grave cause, and it was not easy for the people of those States to perceive a grave reason for secession which was followed by a re-enactment by the seceders of the whole body of the laws of the Union from which they had seceded.

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Abraham Lincoln (1)
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