Lincoln on Slavery
Abraham Lincoln lost an 1832 election for a seat in the Illinois House of Representatives. He shrewdly grasped an opportunity to clamber back in to the political arena as a result of the 1854 Kansas-Nebraska Act which proposed to allow the settlers of these regions to decide whether they would or would not allow slavery. Lincoln felt this new legislation would repeal the Missouri Compromise which prohibited slavery above the 36-30′ parallel.  In so doing, he appeared to be a righteous abolitionist but a quote from a speech he made in Peoria, Illinois on October 16, 1854, reveals his precise reason for wanting to keep slavery out of the mid-western areas:
"Whether slavery shall go into Nebraska, or other new territories, is not a matter of exclusive concern to the people who may go there. The whole nation is interested that the best use shall be made of these territories. We want them for the homes of free white people. This they cannot be, to any considerable extent, if slavery shall be planted within them. Slave States are places for poor white people to remove FROM; not to remove TO. New free States are the places for poor people to go to and better their condition. For this use, the nation needs these territories."