Simon Review Paper #4


The 2004 U.S. Senate race in Illinois may prove to be one of the most significant in American history. Perhaps not since the Senate election of 1858, when Stephen Douglas defeated Abraham Lincoln, has one Senate election had such an impact on the national leadership cadre. Although Lincoln lost the election, his speeches and debates with Douglas over slavery and the future of the Union ensured his place as a national leader of the young Republican Party and then as a leading contender for the Republican nomination in 1860 (Goodman, 2005).