Wigfall of Texas unashamedly used fear to motivate southern constituents to vote against the Republican candidate, Abraham Lincoln.
Lincoln’s name was not even listed on ballots in nine southern states.
As republicanism was the core philosophy of the United States, The Union longed to bring slavery to a gradual end by containing its spread throughout the nation.
The South believed that this idea went against their Constitutional rights and that they should be allowed to own slaves if they so desired.
This certainly would have had less adverse impact than the Civil War—which ruined the South’s economy and plummeted the southern people into poverty for decades.
A possible answer is “fear.” The Fire Eaters of the South (politicians like Rhett, Yancey, Calhoun, and Wigfall) were influential politicians and, in Rhett’s case, influential newspaper owners.See the Outline of the Civil War page and the Recommended Reading page of Great American History for research tools in this subject.The American Civil War of 1861-1865 was fought between the Union (the northern states) and The Confederates (the southern states) under the presidency of Abraham Lincoln.The Southern economy could have continued to prosper.This was because the US Senate was evenly balanced between pro-slavery and anti-slavery factions until 1858, when the anti-slavery block increased by four votes (34 to 30) over the pro-slavery block.The rise of chattel slavery meant that slaves could be bought and sold as property and any children the slaves had could become property too. As Lincoln stated in his inaugural address, one-eighth of the American population were coloured slaves that were localised in The South which had particular and powerful interests.All knew that these interests were somehow the cause of the war.So this is how southern politicians instilled fear in their constituents.A worthwhile research paper topic is to determine whether or not northern politicians did the same thing (with opposite intentions)?Even though there were differences of opinion on slavery within Union states at the time and not all the states that held slaves were part of The Confederacy, it was generally clear that The North and The South held opposing views to slavery, leading to political causes of the civil war.From a philosophical perspective, slave ownership was not consistent with republicanism, a philosophy which held unalienable individual rights and liberty as its key central values.