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Handout C: What Would You Do? (Election of 1876)

What Would You Do?

Directions: Applying what you know about the Constitution and the election of 1876, answer the questions below.

  1. Brainstorm some other actions Congress could have taken in response to the electoral returns from South Carolina, Louisiana, and Florida in 1876.
  2. Should Congress have devised the Special Commission—a solution to the controversy that was outside the Constitution?
  3. How, if at all, might other levels and branches of government have gotten involved?
  4. Imagine you and your group members are members of Congress. Your task is to draft an “Election Controversy Amendment” that specifically details what action(s) the federal government should take if states send conflicting electoral vote counts. Write your proposed amendment in the space below.