Why are the speeches of Horatio Seymour against President Abraham Lincoln and his Civil War, important today, when Lincoln is an American icon? As Honest Abe and The Great Emancipator, he is viewed as a semi-god whose grand virtues far outweigh his minuscule human failings. But he was t always viewed this way. During his presidency he was feared and hated, t only by Southerners, but also by his political enemies, the Democrats and, to a surprising degree, by the rank-and-file of his own Republican Party. They recognized that he had become a dictator, and was turning the U.S.A. into a permanent military dictatorship. Today, much of this has been swept under the rug. But Horatio Seymour's words have kept that reality alive. Once again, why is this important for today? Because, much of the negatives in 21st century American society; the centralization of power, the political indifference to the popular will, the continual expansion of the military-industrial complex, can all be traced to their starting point: Abe Lincoln's presidency.