Andrew Johnson served as the president of the United States from 1865 to 1869. He was the 17th American president and he came after Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. The advent of his presidential terms was marked at the end of the civil war. Johnson undertook measures that led to advancement of radical restorations in the United States. Part of his restoration strategy targeted creating unity in the states by reinstating relations with the seceded states (US History, 2014). The reconstruction processes that were advanced by Johnson affected both the nation and the state of Louisiana.
Johnson was always at the forefront in protecting the rights that were outlined by the law. As a democrat, he always blocked radical legislations that were being passed by the republicans that were characterized with impunity. He always advocated for a more powerful state government as opposed to a federal government. This assisted him to protect the social and economic affairs of the people from the malice of the republicans. However, he strongly against The Freedmen’s Bureau by indicating that this was one of the initiatives of the federal government taking over powers into the states.
Johnson undertook massive presidential reconstruction activities just like Lincoln. Part of his strategy was to restore union within the shortest time possible. His plans began even when the congress was recessing. As part of the presidential reconstruction, he made sure that he returned all the land that had been confiscated to the whit6e people who were in the south. He was supported the southern rich people who greatly advocated for racism. However, he initiated plans that assisted in the abolishment of slavery through the ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment. He was very keen to ensure that all reconstruction activities are over before the end of the congress’ recess. This is because he knew that the moderate republicans could not support most of his reconstruction activities, especially those initiated at the south.
Johnson spearheaded radicalization in the United States. This is because he was perceived to be a very big racist as he supported racist activities. He supported the rich southerners with very big portions of land to advance racism. During this time, the former slaves were not accorded rights just like any other people. This served the interest of the rich southerners well. Johnson’s reconstruction plans led to the formation of deadlock between the president and the congress (US History, 2014).
In Louisiana the Freedmen’s Bureau defined various attributes related related to race, radicalization and war. This is because it defined the level to which the army commander sin Louisiana could occur between the freedmen and state officials. During his time, Johnson stripped the Bureau of its power and thus giving room for massive slavery and racism activities to advance. This was later revised by the congress. This indicated that the government had the responsibility to give protection to the rights of the blacks. Under the Freedman’s Bureau, Johnson advocated for the release of the black slaves. However, redistribution of land and resources for the southerners occurred to the rich whites but not to the black Americans.
After ascending to power, Johnson wanted to take full control of the reconstruction plan (US History, 2014). This was to restore the relations and policies after the civil war. However, members of the congress did not want him to take full charge of the reconstruction process because of the radical activities that Johnson associated himself with. This led to a massive deterioration of the relationship between Johnson and the Congress. One of the contentious issues that led to a war of supremacy between the presidency and the congress in the plan were the issues that surrounded the southern. Focus was on the rights of the slaves and loyalty to the Union.
- United States History. Radical Reconstruction. The Independence Hall Association. 2014. Retrieved from http://www.ushistory.org/us/35b.asp