United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D. C; the composition and powers of the Senate are established by Article One of the United States Constitution. The Senate is composed of senators; each state, regardless of its population size, is represented by two senators who serve staggered terms of six years. There being at present 50 states in the Union, there are presently 100 senators. From 1789 until 1913, senators were appointed by legislatures of the states; as the upper chamber of Congress, the Senate has several powers of advice and consent which are unique to it. These include the approval of treaties, the confirmation of Cabinet secretaries, Supreme Court justices, federal judges, flag officers, regulatory officials, other federal executive officials and other federal uniformed officers.
In addition to these, in cases wherein no candidate receives a majority of electors for Vice President, the duty falls to the Senate to elect one of the top two recipients of electors for that office. Furthermore, the Senate has the responsibility of conducting the trials of those impeached by the House; the Senate is considered both a more deliberative and more prestigious body than the House of Representatives due to its longer terms, smaller size, statewide constituencies, which led to a more collegial and less partisan atmosphere. The presiding officer of the Senate is the Vice President of the United States, President of the Senate. In the Vice President's absence, the President Pro Tempore, customarily the senior member of the party holding a majority of seats, presides over the Senate. In the early 20th century, the practice of majority and minority parties electing their floor leaders began, although they are not constitutional officers; the drafters of the Constitution created a bicameral Congress as a compromise between those who felt that each state, since it was sovereign, should be represented, those who felt the legislature must directly represent the people, as the House of Commons did in Great Britain.
This idea of having one chamber represent people while the other gives equal representation to states regardless of population, was known as the Connecticut Compromise. There was a desire to have two Houses that could act as an internal check on each other. One was intended to be a "People's House" directly elected by the people, with short terms obliging the representatives to remain close to their constituents; the other was intended to represent the states to such extent as they retained their sovereignty except for the powers expressly delegated to the national government. The Senate was thus not designed to serve the people of the United States equally; the Constitution provides that the approval of both chambers is necessary for the passage of legislation. First convened in 1789, the Senate of the United States was formed on the example of the ancient Roman Senate; the name is derived from Latin for council of elders. James Madison made the following comment about the Senate: In England, at this day, if elections were open to all classes of people, the property of landed proprietors would be insecure.
An agrarian law would soon take place. If these observations be just, our government ought to secure the permanent interests of the country against innovation. Landholders ought to have a share in the government, to support these invaluable interests, to balance and check the other, they ought to be so constituted. The Senate, ought to be this body. Article Five of the Constitution stipulates that no constitutional amendment may be created to deprive a state of its equal suffrage in the Senate without that state's consent; the District of Columbia and all other territories are not entitled to representation allowed to vote in either House of the Congress. The District of Columbia elects two "shadow U. S. Senators", but they are officials of the D. C. City Government and not members of the U. S. Senate; the United States has had 50 states since 1959, thus the Senate has had 100 senators since 1959. The disparity between the most and least populous states has grown since the Connecticut Compromise, which granted each state two members of the Senate and at least one member of the House of Representatives, for a total minimum of three presidential electors, regardless of population.
In 1787, Virginia had ten times the population of Rhode Island, whereas today California has 70 times the population of Wyoming, based on the 1790 and 2000 censuses. This means some citizens are two orders of magnitude better represented in the Senate than those in other states. Seats in the House of Representatives are proportionate to the population of each state, reducing the disparity of representation. Before the adoption of the Seventeenth Amendment in 1913, senators were elected by the individual state legislatures. Problems with repeated vacant seats due to the inability of a legislature to elect senators, intrastate political struggles, bribery and intimidation had led to a growing movement to amend the Constitution to allow for the direct election of senators; the party composition of the Senate during the 116th Congress: Art
State legislature (United States)
A state legislature in the United States is the legislative body of any of the 50 U. S. states. The formal name varies from state to state. In 25 states, the legislature is called the Legislature, or the State Legislature, while in 19 states, the legislature is called the General Assembly. In Massachusetts and New Hampshire, the legislature is called the General Court, while North Dakota and Oregon designate the legislature the Legislative Assembly; every state except Nebraska has a bicameral legislature, meaning that the legislature consists of two separate legislative chambers or houses. In each case the smaller chamber is called the Senate and is referred to as the upper house; this chamber but not always, has the exclusive power to confirm appointments made by the governor and to try articles of impeachment. Members of the smaller chamber represent more citizens and serve for longer terms than members of the larger chamber four years. In 41 states, the larger chamber is called the House of Representatives.
Five states designate the larger chamber the Assembly and three states call it the House of Delegates. Members of the larger chamber serve for terms of two years; the larger chamber customarily has the exclusive power to initiate taxing legislation and articles of impeachment. Prior to United States Supreme Court decisions Reynolds v. Sims and Baker v. Carr in the 1960s, the basis of representation in most state legislatures was modeled on that of the U. S. Congress: the state senators represented geographical units while members of the larger chamber represented population. In 1964, the United States Supreme Court announced the one man, one vote standard and invalidated state legislative representation based on geography. Nebraska had a bicameral legislature like the other states, but the lower house was abolished following a referendum, effective with the 1936 elections; the remaining unicameral legislature is called the Nebraska Legislature, but its members continue to be called senators. As a legislative branch of government, a legislature performs state duties for a state in the same way that the United States Congress performs national duties at the national level.
The same system of checks and balances that exists at the Federal level exists between the state legislature, the state executive officer and the state judiciary, though the degree to which this is so varies from one state to the next. During a legislative session, the legislature considers matters introduced by its members or submitted by the governor. Businesses and other special interest organizations lobby the legislature to obtain beneficial legislation, defeat unfavorably perceived measures, or influence other legislative action. A legislature approves the state's operating and capital budgets, which may begin as a legislative proposal or a submission by the governor. Under the terms of Article V of the U. S. Constitution, state lawmakers retain the power to ratify Constitutional amendments which have been proposed by both houses of Congress and they retain the ability to call for a national convention to propose amendments to the U. S. Constitution. After the convention has concluded its business 75% of the states will be required to ratify what the convention has proposed.
Under Article II, state legislatures choose the manner of appointing the state's presidential electors. State legislatures appointed the U. S. Senators from their respective states until the ratification of the 17th Amendment in 1913 required the direct election of Senators by the state's voters; the legislative bodies and their committees use either Mason's Manual of Legislative Procedure or an amended form thereof. During official meetings, a professional parliamentarian is available to ensure that legislation and accompanying discussion proceed as orderly as possible without bias; the lawmaking process begins with the introduction of a bill in either the House of Representatives or the Senate. Bills may be introduced in either house, sometimes with the exception of bills increasing or decreasing revenue, which must originate in the House of Representatives; the order of business in each house provides a proper time for the introduction of bills. Bills are assigned consecutive numbers, given in the order of their introduction, to facilitate identification.
A bill cannot become enacted until it has been read on a certain number of days in each house. Upon introduction, a bill is read by its title only, constituting the first reading of the bill; because a bill is read by title only, it is important that the title give the members notice of the subject matter contained in the bill. As with other legislative bodies throughout the world, U. S. state legislatures operate through committees when considering proposed bills. Thus, committee action is the most important phase of the legislative process. Most bills cannot be enacted into law until it has been referred to, acted upon by, returned from, a standing committee in each house. Reference to committee follows the first reading of the bill; each committee is set up to consider bills relating to a particular subject. Standing committees are charged with the important responsibility of examining bills and recommending action to the Senate or House. On days when a legislature is not in session, the committees of each house meet and consider the bills that have been referred to them to decide if the assigned bills should be reported f
Richmond is the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. It is the center of the Greater Richmond Region. Richmond was incorporated in 1742 and has been an independent city since 1871; as of the 2010 census, the city's population was 204,214. The Richmond Metropolitan Area has a population of 1,260,029, the third-most populous metro in the state. Richmond is located at the fall line of the James River, 44 miles west of Williamsburg, 66 miles east of Charlottesville, 100 miles east of Lynchburg and 90 miles south of Washington, D. C. Surrounded by Henrico and Chesterfield counties, the city is located at the intersections of Interstate 95 and Interstate 64, encircled by Interstate 295, Virginia State Route 150 and Virginia State Route 288. Major suburbs include Midlothian to the southwest, Chesterfield to the south, Varina to the southeast, Sandston to the east, Glen Allen to the north and west, Short Pump to the west and Mechanicsville to the northeast; the site of Richmond had been an important village of the Powhatan Confederacy, was settled by English colonists from Jamestown in 1609, in 1610–1611.
The present city of Richmond was founded in 1737. It became Dominion of Virginia in 1780, replacing Williamsburg. During the Revolutionary War period, several notable events occurred in the city, including Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death" speech in 1775 at St. John's Church, the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom written by Thomas Jefferson. During the American Civil War, Richmond served as the second and permanent capital of the Confederate States of America; the city entered the 20th century with one of the world's first successful electric streetcar systems. The Jackson Ward neighborhood is a national hub of African-American culture. Richmond's economy is driven by law and government, with federal and local governmental agencies, as well as notable legal and banking firms, located in the downtown area; the city is home to both the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, one of 13 United States courts of appeals, the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, one of 12 Federal Reserve Banks.
Dominion Energy and WestRock, Fortune 500 companies, are headquartered in the city, with others in the metropolitan area. After the first permanent English-speaking settlement was established in April 1607, at Jamestown, Captain Christopher Newport led explorers northwest up the James River, to an area, inhabited by Powhatan Native Americans; the earliest European settlement in the Central Virginia area was in 1611 at Henricus, where the Falling Creek empties into the James River. In 1619, early Virginia Company settlers struggling to establish viable moneymaking industries established the Falling Creek Ironworks. After decades of territorial conflicts with native tribes, the Falls of the James became more to white settlement in the late 1600s and early 1700s. In 1737, planter William Byrd II commissioned Major William Mayo to lay out the original town grid. Byrd named the city "Richmond" after the English town of Richmond near London, because the view of the James River was strikingly similar to the view of the River Thames from Richmond Hill in England, where he had spent time during his youth.
The settlement was laid out in April 1737, was incorporated as a town in 1742. In 1775, Patrick Henry delivered his famous "Give me Liberty or Give me Death" speech in St. John's Church in Richmond, crucial for deciding Virginia's participation in the First Continental Congress and setting the course for revolution and independence. On April 18, 1780, the state capital was moved from the colonial capital of Williamsburg to Richmond, to provide a more centralized location for Virginia's increasing westerly population, as well as to isolate the capital from British attack; the latter motive proved to be in vain, in 1781, under the command of Benedict Arnold, Richmond was burned by British troops, causing Governor Thomas Jefferson to flee as the Virginia militia, led by Sampson Mathews, defended the city. Richmond recovered from the war, by 1782 was once again a thriving city. In 1786, the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom was passed at the temporary capitol in Richmond, providing the basis for the separation of church and state, a key element in the development of the freedom of religion in the United States.
A permanent home for the new government, the Greek Revival style of the Virginia State Capitol building, was designed by Thomas Jefferson with the assistance of Charles-Louis Clérisseau, was completed in 1788. After the American Revolutionary War, Richmond emerged as an important industrial center. To facilitate the transfer of cargo from the flat-bottomed James River bateaux above the fall line to the ocean-faring ships below, an enterprising George Washington helped design the James River and Kanawha Canal from Westham east to Richmond, in the 18th century to bypass Richmond's rapids on the upper James River with the intent of providing a water route across the Appalachian Mountains to the Kanawha River flowing westward into the Ohio eventually to the Mississippi River; the legacy of the canal boatmen is represented by the figure in the center of the city flag. As a result of this and ample access to hydropower due to the falls, Richmond became home to some of the largest manufacturing facilities in the country, including iron works and flour mills, the largest facilities of their kind in The South.
The resistance to the s
2017 Virginia House of Delegates election
The Virginia House of Delegates election of 2017 was held on Tuesday, November 7. All 100 seats in the Virginia House of Delegates were contested; the Republican Party held a 66–34 majority in the House of Delegates before the election but lost 15 seats to the Democratic Party, resulting in the Republicans holding a 50–49 advantage. After a recount, the result of the election in the 94th district was called a tie; the candidate to hold the seat was determined by random drawing on January 4, 2018, which resulted in the Republicans holding a 51–49 majority. The election was marred by electoral irregularities, such as robocalls falsely telling voters their polling places had changed and voters being assigned to the wrong district; these irregularities led to a delay in the certification of the election results. Several candidates filed for recounts, one of which changed the result, the first time in 30 years that a recount in a Virginia election had done so; that recount's results were not certified, due to a questionable ballot.
The election took place during the first term of President Donald Trump, a Republican who won the 2016 presidential election. Democrats fielded a larger number of candidates than usual in hopes of defying Trump. While 17 Republican delegates' districts backed Clinton, none of the Democrats' districts backed Trump. For this reason, Democrats focused more on picking up seats than on defending seats. Early on, it was expected that Republicans would hold the majority, but Democrats became more optimistic following the unexpectedly close result in Kansas's 4th congressional district special election. After Jacqueline Smith won the election for Prince William County Clerk of Circuit Court, Republicans expressed concern that Democratic momentum and Republican internal bickering could cause them to lose five to ten seats in the House of Delegates. Democratic state senator Jeremy McPike argued that Smith's victory boded well for Democratic turnout in the state election; the filing deadline for Republicans and Democrats to participate in the June 13 primary was March 30.
There were seven open House seats, as Republicans Dave Albo, Mark Dudenhefer, Peter Farrell, Bill Howell, Jimmie Massie, Rick Morris, Democrat Daun Hester all declined to run again. A total of 55 House of Delegates races were contested. 77 Democrats lined up to challenge 49 Republican incumbents. 35 races were uncontested in the general election, with 13 having only a Republican candidate and 22 having only a Democrat. In the 2017 election, Democrats reported 153,442 donations of $100 or less, whereas Republicans reported 7,332 such donations. By November 8, the Associated Press called the elections in 96 districts, giving the Democrats a 49–47 advantage but not yet the majority of seats. Upon certification of the election results on November 27, the Republicans held a 51–49 majority. A recount in the 94th district resulted in the Democrats gaining one more seat, causing a 50–50 split, but a three-judge panel declined to certify the result and counted another vote that tied the election, which led to the panel declaring that there was no winner.
So the balance of the House of Delegates was at 50–49 in the Republicans' favor until the race was resolved through drawing lots, as per state law. On January 4, 2018, the drawing was held and Republican David Yancey was declared the winner, his opponent, Shelly Simonds, conceded on January 10. There were several notable candidates. Democratic candidate Chris Hurst, whose girlfriend was murdered on live television in 2015, defeated Republican incumbent and National Rifle Association-supported Joseph Yost in the 12th district. In the 13th district, Democratic candidate Danica Roem defeated Republican incumbent Bob Marshall to become the first transgender candidate to be elected and serve in a state legislative body in the United States. In the 21st and 42nd districts Democratic candidates Kelly Fowler and Kathy Tran became the first Asian American women elected to the House of Delegates after defeating Republican incumbent Ron Villanueva and candidate Lolita Mancheno-Smoak. Democratic candidates Elizabeth Guzmán and Hala Ayala defeated Republican incumbents Scott Lingamfelter and Richard Anderson in the 31st and 51st districts to become the first two Hispanic women elected to the House of Delegates.
In the 50th district, Lee Carter, the Democratic candidate and a self-described democratic socialist, defeated Republican incumbent and House Majority Whip Jackson Miller. Democratic candidate Dawn M. Adams became the first lesbian candidate to be elected to the House of Delegates after defeating Republican incumbent G. Manoli Loupassi in the 68th district. In the 2017 election, 25 women were elected to the House of Delegates, breaking the previous record of 19, set in 2013. Republican to Democratic 2nd district 10th district 12th district 13th district 21st district 31st district 32nd district 42nd district 50th district 51st district 67th district 68th district 72nd district 73rd district 85th district Frank Bruni, a columnist for The New York Times, said the Republican Party should be "scared" as a result of the Virginia elections. Slate writer Mark Stern blamed gerrymandering as the reason why the Democrats did not win a majority in the House of Delegates. Chicago Tribune editorial board member Clarence Page called the election an "unmistakable anti-Trump backlash."
On November 7, a Twitter account called "MAGA Mike King" was suspended after it tweeted more than a dozen times a graphic purportedly instructing Virginians on how to vote by text. On the same day, Harry Wiggins, the chair of the Prince William County Democratic Committee, told The Intercept that voters in
Jill Kendrick Vogel is an American politician and attorney serving as the Virginia State Senator from the 27th district since 2008. A Republican, her district is located in the northern part of the state and consists of Clarke County and Frederick County, the city of Winchester, as well as parts of Fauquier County, Culpeper County, Loudoun County. Born in Roanoke, Vogel's family started a small business that had had grown into an enterprise employing over 600 people in Virginia. Vogel attended the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg and received a B. A. degree in government and religion. She attended DePaul University's Law School in Chicago and received a J. D. degree. A member of the Virginia and Washington D. C. bars, Vogel specializes in laws relating to charitable and nonprofit organizations, as well as campaign finance and ethics. Vogel served as Deputy General Counsel in the Department of Energy, before starting her own law firm, Holtzman Vogel Josefiak Torchinsky. Vogel became the Chief Counsel of the Republican National Committee in February 2004.
She was elected to the Senate of Virginia as a Republican in 2007, after long-term state senator Russ Potts retired, defeating several opponents in the Republican primary and the general election. She represents much of the territory, once represented by former Governor and U. S. Senator Harry F. Byrd Sr. and former U. S. Senator Harry F. Byrd Jr, it was one of the first areas of Virginia to turn Republican. Vogel faced a contentious race in 2007, winning by only 661 votes over Winchester School Board Trustee Karen Schultz as the Democrats regained control of the Senate, she was re-elected by a wider margin in 2011. In 2012, Vogel attracted nationwide media attention for a bill she introduced requiring abortion clinics to provide ultrasounds, which she described as necessary for informed consent. In 2015, Vogel's candidacy for reelection was unopposed, she became the Caucus Whip for the Republican party in the state Senate. In 2016, she introduced legislation to allow victims of domestic violence to more and obtain concealed weapons permits.
That same year, she gained nationwide media attention for helping repeal laws that allowed "child marriage" involving pregnant minors. In 2017, she sought to curb gerrymandering by introducing a bill establishing more specific criteria for redistricting in Virginia, she introduced legislation to legalize medicinal use of non-psychoactive cannabis oils for a range of conditions. In 2017, after an unusually bitter primary battle, Vogel became the Republican nominee for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia in 2017, she lost to Democrat Justin Fairfax in the general election on November 7, 2017. If she had been elected, she would have become the first female Lieutenant Governor of Virginia. "Senator Jill Holtzman Vogel. Senate of Virginia. Archived from the original on 2009-01-15. Retrieved 2009-01-16. Jill Vogel's official website Jill Vogel's campaign site Senate of Virginia page about Jill Vogel Virginia Public Access Project page about Jill Vogel Jill Vogel at Ballotpedia Project Vote Smart – Senator Jill Vogel profile Our Campaigns – Senator Jill Vogel profile
Virginia State Capitol
The Virginia State Capitol is the seat of state government of the Commonwealth of Virginia, located in Richmond, the third capital city of the U. S. state of Virginia. It houses the oldest elected legislative body in North America, the Virginia General Assembly, first established as the House of Burgesses in 1619; the Capitol was conceived of by Thomas Jefferson and Charles-Louis Clérisseau in France, based on the Maison Carrée in Nimes, France. Construction began in 1785 and was completed in 1788; the current Capitol is the eighth built to serve as Virginia's statehouse due to fires during the Colonial period. In the early 20th century, two wings were added. In 1960, it was designated a National Historic Landmark. During the American Colonial period, Virginia's first capital was Jamestown, where the first legislative body, the Virginia House of Burgesses, met in 1619; the new government used four state houses at different times at Jamestown due to fires. The first Representative Legislative Assembly convened on July 30, 1619 at the Jamestown Church which served as the first Capitol.
With the decision to relocate the government inland to Williamsburg in 1699, a grand new Capitol building was completed in November 1705. Nearby was the grand Governor's Palace, it burned in 1747 and was replaced in 1753. On June 29, 1776, Virginians declared their independence from Great Britain and wrote the state's first constitution, thereby creating an independent government four days before Congress voted for the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia on July 4; the Capitol at Williamsburg served until the American Revolutionary War began, when Governor Thomas Jefferson urged that the capital be relocated to Richmond. The building was last used as a capitol on December 24, 1779, when the Virginia General Assembly adjourned to reconvene in 1780 at the new capital, Richmond, it was destroyed. When it convened in Richmond on May 1, 1780, the legislature met in a makeshift building near Shockoe Bottom. By 1788, the "Old Capitol" where the Virginia Ratifying Convention met was at the New Academy by the Chevalier Quesnay.
Plans were begun for a new building to serve the Commonwealth of Virginia. The site selected for a new, permanent building was on Shockoe Hill, a major hill overlooking the falls of the James River. Thomas Jefferson is credited with the overall design of the new Capitol, together with French architect Charles-Louis Clérisseau; the design was modeled after the Maison Carrée at Nîmes in an ancient Roman temple. The only other state to copy an ancient model is the Vermont State House, which based its portico on the Temple of Hephaestus in Athens. Jefferson had Clérisseau substitute the Ionic order over the more ornate Corinthian column designs of the prototype in France. At the suggestion of Clérisseau, it used a variant of the Ionic order designed by Italian student of Andrea Palladio, Vincenzo Scamozzi; the cornerstone was laid on August 18, 1785, with Governor Patrick Henry in attendance, prior to the completion of its design. In 1786, a set of architectural drawings and a plaster model were sent from France to Virginia, where it was executed by Samuel Dobie.
It was sufficiently completed for the General Assembly to meet there in October 1792. It is one of only twelve Capitols in the United States without an external dome; the building served as the Capitol of the Confederacy during the American Civil War. The Capitol, the adjacent Virginia Governor's Mansion, the White House of the Confederacy were spared when departing Confederate troops were ordered to burn the city's warehouses and factories, fires spread out of control in April 1865; the first Flag of the United States to fly over the capitol since secession was hoisted by Lieutenant Johnston L. de Peyster. U. S. President Abraham Lincoln toured the Capitol during his visit to Richmond about a week before his assassination in Washington, DC. From April 6 until April 10, 1865 Lynchburg served as the Capital of Virginia. Under Gov. William Smith, the executive and legislative branches of the commonwealth moved to Lynchburg for the few days between the fall of Richmond and the fall of the Confederacy.
After the end of the American Civil War, during the Reconstruction period, Virginia was under military rule for five years, ending in January 1870. In the ensuing months, a dispute over leadership of the Richmond government resulted in the Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals holding a hearing on April 27, 1870, in the large courtroom on the second floor of the Capitol. Several hundred people crowded in. Before the proceedings could begin, the gallery fell to the courtroom floor; this added weight, in addition to the crowd there, caused the entire courtroom floor to give way, falling 40 feet into the House of Delegates chamber. The injured stumbled, crawled or were carried out onto the Capitol lawn during the mayhem that followed. Sixty-two people were 251 injured. There were no women believed to have been present; the dead included a grandson of Patrick Henry, three members of the General Assembly. Injured included both men contesting the Richmond mayoral position, the speaker of the House of Delegates, a judge and ex-governor Henry H. Wells.
Former Confederate general Montgomery D. Corse was blinded by the collapse. Despite demands for the building's demolition, the damage from the tragedy
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a war fought in the United States from 1861 to 1865, between the North and the South. The Civil War is the most studied and written about episode in U. S. history. As a result of the long-standing controversy over the enslavement of black people, war broke out in April 1861 when secessionist forces attacked Fort Sumter in South Carolina shortly after Abraham Lincoln had been inaugurated as the President of the United States; the loyalists of the Union in the North proclaimed support for the Constitution. They faced secessionists of the Confederate States in the South, who advocated for states' rights to uphold slavery. Among the 34 U. S. states in February 1861, secessionist partisans in seven Southern slave states declared state secessions from the country and unveiled their defiant formation of a Confederate States of America in rebellion against the U. S. Constitutional government; the Confederacy grew to control over half the territory in eleven states, it claimed the additional states of Kentucky and Missouri by assertions from exiled native secessionists without territory or population.
These were given full representation in the Confederate Congress throughout the Civil War. The two remaining slave holding states of Delaware and Maryland were invited to join the Confederacy, but nothing substantial developed; the Confederate States was never diplomatically recognized by the government of the United States or by that of any foreign country. The states that remained loyal to the U. S. were known as the Union. The Union and the Confederacy raised volunteer and conscription armies that fought in the South over the course of four years. Intense combat left 620,000 to 750,000 people dead, more than the number of U. S. military deaths in all other wars combined. The war ended when General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at the Battle of Appomattox Court House. Confederate generals throughout the southern states followed suit. Much of the South's infrastructure was destroyed the transportation systems; the Confederacy collapsed, slavery was abolished, four million black slaves were freed.
During the Reconstruction Era that followed the war, national unity was restored, the national government expanded its power, civil rights were granted to freed black slaves through amendments to the Constitution and federal legislation. In the 1860 presidential election, led by Abraham Lincoln, supported banning slavery in all the U. S. territories. The Southern states viewed this as a violation of their constitutional rights and as the first step in a grander Republican plan to abolish slavery; the three pro-Union candidates together received an overwhelming 82% majority of the votes cast nationally: Republican Lincoln's votes centered in the north, Democrat Stephen A. Douglas' votes were distributed nationally and Constitutional Unionist John Bell's votes centered in Tennessee and Virginia; the Republican Party, dominant in the North, secured a plurality of the popular votes and a majority of the electoral votes nationally. He was the first Republican Party candidate to win the presidency.
However, before his inauguration, seven slave states with cotton-based economies declared secession and formed the Confederacy. The first six to declare secession had the highest proportions of slaves in their populations, with an average of 49 percent. Of those states whose legislatures resolved for secession, the first seven voted with split majorities for unionist candidates Douglas and Bell, or with sizable minorities for those unionists. Of these, only Texas held a referendum on secession. Eight remaining slave states continued to reject calls for secession. Outgoing Democratic President James Buchanan and the incoming Republicans rejected secession as illegal. Lincoln's March 4, 1861, inaugural address declared that his administration would not initiate a civil war. Speaking directly to the "Southern States", he attempted to calm their fears of any threats to slavery, reaffirming, "I have no purpose, directly or indirectly to interfere with the institution of slavery in the United States where it exists.
I believe I have no lawful right to do so, I have no inclination to do so." After Confederate forces seized numerous federal forts within territory claimed by the Confederacy, efforts at compromise failed and both sides prepared for war. The Confederates assumed that European countries were so dependent on "King Cotton" that they would intervene, but none did, none recognized the new Confederate States of America. Hostilities began on April 1861, when Confederate forces fired upon Fort Sumter. While in the Western Theater the Union made significant permanent gains, in the Eastern Theater, the battle was inconclusive during 1861–1862. In September 1862, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which made ending slavery a war goal. To the west, by summer 1862 the Union destroyed the Confederate river navy much of its western armies, seized New Orleans; the successful 1863 Union siege of Vicksburg split the Confederacy in two at the Mississippi River. In 1863, Robert E. Lee's Confederate incursion north ended at the Battle of Gettysburg.
Western successes led to Ulysses S. Grant's command of all Union armies in 1864. Inflicting an ever-tightening naval blockade of Confederate ports, the Union marshaled the resources and manpower to attack the Confederacy from all directions, leading to the fall of Atlanta to William T. Sherman and his march to th