Voting Station

Edmund G. Ross

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U.S. Senator

The Resume

    (December 7, 1826-May 8, 1907)
    Born in Ashland, Ohio
    US Senator from Kansas (1866-71)
    Governor of New Mexico Territory (1885-89)
    Best known for being the seventh of seven Republican Senators who voted against conviction in the impeachment trial of Andrew Johnson

Why he might be annoying:

    The other six Republicans who voted to acquit Johnson suffered similar repercussions, but he tends to get the most attention for being the deciding vote.
    His vote was not as decisive as its usually portrayed: four other Republican Senators had indicated a willingness to acquit Johnson if needed.
    Speculation on his reasons for acquitting Johnson has been all over the map, including: a genuine belief that Johnson's alleged misdeeds did not constitute an impeachable offense; personal dislike of Benjamin Wade, who would have become President if Johnson had been removed from office; the influence of Thomas Ewing, Jr., an ardent Johnson supporter who had been Ross's commanding officer during the Civil War; and outright bribery.
    In the months after the impeachment trial, he asked Johnson to support some of his friends and political allies to plum patronage jobs, accompanying the request with a none too subtle reminder that the President owed him big time.

Why he might not be annoying:

    He was one of several Milwaukee residents who stormed a local jail to free Joshua Glover, an escaped slave who had been recaptured, and then helped Glover escape to Canada (1854).
    A House of Representatives investigation into charges of bribery during the impeachment trial found no evidence against him -- but it did turn up evidence suggesting Kansas's other Senator, Samuel Pomeroy, may have accepted a payment for his vote to convict.
    Navy Secretary Gideon Welles noted about the Republicans who voted to acquit, 'Ross is abused most.'
    His description of the impeachment as 'an ill-disguised and malevolent prosecution' pretty much lines up with the historic view.
    He was married to Fannie Lathrop for 51 years.

Credit: C. Fishel


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Year In Review:

    For 2021, as of last week, Out of 5 Votes: 40.0% Annoying
    In 2021, Out of 6 Votes: 16.67% Annoying