Vallandigham Case: View Results of Your Choice

Yes, that is what I did. Burnside’s actions embarrassed me, but I decided not to repudiate him. So, I told my critics that Vallandigham was arrested for trying to prevent the raising of troops and encouraging desertions. I asked, “Must I shoot a simple-minded soldier-boy who deserts, while I must not touch a hair of the wily agitator who induces him to desert?” To contain the political damage, however, I changed Vallandigham’s sentence from imprisonment to banishment from the Union. He returned anyway, and campaigned against me in 1864. This time, however, I ordered my generals to leave him alone.

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