By Walter R. Borneman
In Polk, Walter R. Borneman supplies us the 1st whole and authoritative biography of a president frequently overshadowed in photo yet seldom outdone in accomplishment. James ok. Polk occupied the White residence for less than 4 years, from 1845 to 1849, yet he plotted and attained a powerful time table: He fought for and received tariff discounts, reestablished an autonomous Treasury, and, so much particularly, introduced Texas into the Union, bluffed nice Britain out of the lion’s proportion of Oregon, and wrested California and lots more and plenty of the Southwest from Mexico. looking back, those successes appear much more remarkable, given the contentious political surroundings of the time.
In this unheard of, long-overdue warts-and-all examine Polk’s existence and occupation, we now have a portrait of an expansionist president and decisive statesman who redefined the rustic he led, and we're reminded anew of the real that means of presidential accomplishment and unravel.
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Additional info for Polk: The Man Who Transformed the Presidency and America
The try out were successful, and now information of Polk's nomination flashed immediately around the distance of 40 miles to Washington. a number of the Democrats on Capitol Hill knew Polk individually from his carrier there, and Polk's nomination met with as nice a cheer as had crammed the corridor at Baltimore. thirteen “Your nomination for the presidency unanimously upon the second one poll [of the day] used to be made today,” wrote Cave Johnson to his pal. “Never used to be there such unanimity and such enthusiasm…. your pals did their accountability nobly. ” And from Gideon Pillow, there got here related sentiments. “Never was once there such enthusiasm prior to obvious or witnessed in any physique. I held you up ahead of the conference, because the ‘Olive department of peace,’ and all events ran to you as an ark of defense. ” The query for heritage will be no matter if James okay. Polk was once a depressing horse who got here from nowhere, or probably the most capable and made up our minds politicians of his time. 14 he excited delegates reassembled after lunch on Wednesday afternoon to soak up the vice presidential nomination. Benjamin Butler recommended that during the curiosity of harmony—as good as a powerful Democratic turnout in big apple state—the nomination can be provided to Silas Wright. With basically 8 Georgians vote casting opposed to it, Wright's nomination was once quickly made, and note of it flashed to Wright in Washington through telegraph. yet Wright was once nonetheless miffed through the convention's rejection of Van Buren. He had refused the presidential nomination and the likelihood of a Wright-Polk price tag, and he used to be certainly unlikely to simply accept the vice presidential slot on a Polk-Wright price ticket. again got here Wright's solution through telegraph from Washington that he declined the nomination. Butler used to be yes that Wright may be confident another way, and a telegraphic trade ensued. Having stated no 4 occasions by way of telegraph, Wright ultimately dispatched congressmen in a wagon to force to Baltimore—the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad didn't but function at night—and express his solution in no doubtful phrases. as a result the subsequent morning, Thursday, might 30, while the conference reconvened to approve a platform, the vice presidential choice needed to be performed a moment time. For a second, it seemed impasse just like the presidential vote casting may possibly take place. Southerners and annexationists voted for both Lewis Cass or Levi Woodbury of recent Hampshire. The Van Buren trustworthy attempted to rally at the back of Senator John Fairfield of Maine. yet at the moment poll, Robert J. Walker of Mississippi, an established Polk best friend, recommend the identify of his personal uncle by means of marriage, George M. Dallas of Pennsylvania. Dallas proved applicable to either factions, and Pennsylvania promised to be a formal geographic stability with Tennessee. by way of the top of the second one poll, help for the Polk-Dallas price tag used to be unanimous. 15 With the delegates heading for the exits, the Democratic platform of 1844 was once authorized nearly as an afterthought. basically, it was once as precise to Jacksonian democracy because the Whigs' platform was once to Henry Clay's imaginative and prescient of federal executive.