The passage of this Act in 1854 negated the Missouri Compromise of 1820 and made it possible for voters in Kansas and Nebraska to decide whether or not slavery would exist in their respective territories. Opponents of slavery were outraged. Abraham Lincoln clearly saw the threat that such legislation presented to a government founded on the ideals and principles set forth in the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution. In a brilliant speech at Peoria, Illinois, on October 16, 1854, he laid out his objections to the Kansas-Nebraska Act. The speech revived his political career.
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