Why was President Johnson impeached?
Andrew Johnson was the 17th President of the United States. Although not new in politics, he was branded as the worst president the US had.
Before he became a US president, he was a former Senator from Greeneville. He stood firm with is decisions and was the only Southern senator who did not quit during the secession of the Southern States. He was known for being a war democrat and supported military policies of Lincoln during the American Civil War.
In 1864, Johnson won as Vice-President on the National Union Party. A year after, his political career changed when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated. This gave him the chance to rule the US. A lot of his constituents do not like him because he took charge of Presidential reconstruction. This made him the greatest enemy of Radical Republicans. What made him even more the target of the Republicans are his peace-making policies to the South and his rejections of some civil rights bills.
Political quarrels between President Johnson and the Radical Republicans led to the impeachment of Johnson. The Radical Republicans wanted to transform southern social and economic life. They are in favor of granting freed slaves full-fledged citizenship. The Congress even enacted a Civil rights Act which granted rights to native-born blacks. However, this was vetoed by President Johnson because the Act is an invasion of states’ rights and it can cause dispute among the races. He even wrote in his letter addressed to Gov. Fletcher that the United States is for the white men and as long as he is the President, it shall be a government for white men.
With the different views of President Johnson and the Radical Republicans over the reunification of the US after the Civil War and his violation of the Tenure of Office Act, Johnson was impeached which made him the first ever US president to be ousted from the highest position.