Mormon Control of Illinois General Election - 1842
Quincy Whig – August 6, 1842
We are yet in the mist, as to the result of the election in the surrounding counties. We have rumors in abundance, but not in a sufficiently reliable shape to place much confidence in them. One week more, and the smoke of the battle cleared away, we shall be better able to judge of the general result.
We have partial returns from this county, and the result is, as doubtless the most of our readers were prepared to expect. The whole Mormon vote has been cast for Ford and Moore. At Nauvoo, Gov. Duncan received but six votes, while Ford received one thousand and thirty-eight! -- This, we suppose, will satisfy the State Register, Quincy Herald, and the other slang-wangers of the party, that there was no league between the Whigs and Jo Smith and his subjects. It will also open the eyes of all parties, to the dangerous and anti-republican tendancy of a political, religious and military band of men, organized in our midst, and trained to obey the will and dictation of one man -- to vote according to his resentments and prejudices -- to sacrifice their own honest convictions of right and duty at the beck and nod of a petty-dictator, whose morals are of so questionable a character, that even delusion itself, cannot much longer, it seems to us, remain blind to the gross and outrageous imposition which is being played off under the cloak of religion. The majority of the people of Nauvoo, are doubtless honest and sincere in their religious attachments, but when they so far throw away their free agency, as to vote in accordance with the selfish and dictatorial policy of Smith, they do not deserve the sympathies -- and we were going to say -- privileges, of freemen. Some one may say, that had the Mormons voted the Whig ticket these expressions would never have come from us. No such thing. We profess to be too much of a republican, to look on and see this outrage upon the elective franchise, without denouncing it at once. Had the Mormons voted the whig tocket in a body, they would have done so in obedience to the dictation of Smith, and the principle would have been equally as anti-republican; and although, we might have had the occasion to rejoice at the result, we still should have condemned the course of proceeding by which the result was brought...
Sangamo Journal – August 12, 1842
We are again beaten in Illinois, not so much
for want of numbers, as from local divisions and apathy on the part of the
Whigs. Under the circumstances all this was to have been expected; consequently
there is nothing in the result to discourage the party, or [weaken] our
confidence in the ability of the Whigs, when they shall again rally in their
strength, from redeeming Illinois from the thralldom of LOCO FOCO rule. The
treachery of John Tyler, has temporarily scattered and disorganized our forces;
but with HENRY CLAY for their leader, they will soon rally in sufficient
strength to bid defiance to Joe Smith's Loco Foco Legion that are now in
possession of the land, and devouring its substance like a hungry swarm of
Egyptian locusts. They have for the last twelve years been sporting with the
interests and prosperity of the people, until there is scarcely a green spot
left on which the eye of the patriot can rest with pleasure; -- prostrating
every interest of the country, and reducing to beggary and want thousands of our
honest and industrious citizens, through whose influence they are enabled to
perpetuate their power. Can this state of things much longer continue? Will
those who have sought an asylum in this land of liberty and plenty, continue to
lend their aid in upholding a system of policy that is so rapidly reducing them
to a level with the poor laborers of their father land? We believe not. Truth is
mighty and will ultimately prevail, although it may for a time be smothered and
kept down by the sophistry and chicanery of Joe Smith and his legion of loco
No one can doubt hereafter, the omnipotence of Joe Smith's power. He has for once, with the aid of his friends and allies, the loco focos, carried Legislature, Governor and all. Will the whigs of Illinois quietly submit to be ruled by that prince of knaves and impostors, Joe Smith? or will they rise in their strength at the next election, strip him of his power and influence, and consign him and his followers to the disgrace and infamy they so richly merit.
We said in the outset of this article, that we were beaten; but by how much cannot be known until the official returns are received. Joe Smith will have, in addition to the Governor and Lieut. Governor, full two-thirds of both branches of the Legislature; consequently, no loco foco will have the hardihood to hold the Whigs responsible for Legislature of the State; and we feel confident that before August next, the people will become surfeited with Mormon loco foco Legislation.
We hope our Whig friends throughout the State, will lose no time in forming "Clay Clubs" in every country town, if not in every precinct. Let us once more unfurl our banner to the breeze, with the name of HENRY CLAY, inscribed upon it, and so sure as 1844 shall come, just so sure will the whigs of the Union again triumph, even should Illinois continue under the control of Joe Smith and his loco foco allies.
Joe Smith's ticket for county officers in Hancock county was entirely successful. Joe thinks that the strength he has brought to the loco foco party, should secure him further "chartered privileges."
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