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Fighting for the SpeakershipThe House and the Rise of Party Government$
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Jeffery A. Jenkins and Charles Stewart

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691118123

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691118123.001.0001

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The Speakership and the Rise of the Republican Party

The Speakership and the Rise of the Republican Party

(p.193) Chapter 7 The Speakership and the Rise of the Republican Party
Fighting for the Speakership

Jeffery A. Jenkins

Charles Stewart III

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the Republican Party's efforts to organize the House of Representatives and build a lasting coalition following the election of Nathaniel Banks as Speaker in the 34th Congress. It first considers the organization of the 34th House, focusing on the election of House officers and the appointment of the standing committees, before discussing the Republicans' fortunes in the 35th Congress. It shows that the Republicans lost control of the chamber to the Democrats in the 35th Congress, but reemerged as the plurality party in the 36th Congress. In particular, it explores how the party weathered another extended speakership race in 1859–1860 before winning all major House officer positions, with the exception of the Sergeant at Arms and the Printer. The chapter suggests that the Republicans succeeded in organizing all aspects of the House by compromising with the Anti-Lecomptons and changing party nominees midstream when necessary.

Keywords:   coalition, Republican Party, Nathaniel Banks, Speaker, Congress, House officers, committees, Printer, Anti-Lecomptons, House of Representatives

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