Both negative and positive effects of Reconstruction legislation remain today. New Deal legislation was designed to pull the country out of its worst ever economic depression and ease human misery by creating employment opportunities and welfare programs. Many New Deal programs remain today. Civil Rights legislation finished what Reconstruction legislation started in terms of legally ensuring equality for Blacks. It, in essence, leveled the playing field for minorities, women and the disabled and was the result of the most massive social movement in history.
Booth’s bullet altered the course of the nation because Vice President Andrew Johnson and President Abraham Lincoln were often diametrically opposed regarding the reconstruction of the South and the degree of civil liberties the freed slaves were to be afforded. Johnson used the presidency to further his own agenda of oppression and revenge on the South following the Civil War. His actions retarded the progression of Reconstruction and in many ways stopped it altogether. The remnants of the Johnson Presidency felt in the South lasted long after his death. The devastated South never received economic help that had been previously promised by Lincoln thus never fully recovered economically. The oppression of Blacks likely continued to a greater degree and for a longer period of time due to Lincoln’s assassination. The cumulative amount of human misery caused by Johnson is incalculable. “Johnson, who took office after Lincoln’s death, was the only Southern senator not to leave office upon secession. Lincoln had put him on the presidential ticket as a symbol of unity, but Johnson was a southern Democrat who was not sympathetic to Lincoln’s Republican Party or to helping the newly-freed slaves” (“What if”, 2007). Despite Johnson’s efforts to the contrary, Congress passed

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