You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe


Opinion | Neal gabler

Abraham Lincoln and the fiscal cliff

As we edge ever closer to that perilous “fiscal cliff,” with Republicans and Democrats accusing one another of intransigence, some observers have pointed to a way out of our national dilemma: Just take a page from Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln.’’

The film tells the story of how the president managed to steer the 13th Amendment outlawing slavery through a House of Representatives that was not particularly hospitable to it. On the one side were Democrats who opposed outlawing slavery on the grounds that this would confer an equality that blacks did not and should not have. On the other side were conservative Republicans who felt that its passage would outrage the Confederacy and prompt it to prolong the war, with continued death and destruction. Neither side was inclined to compromise. So what was Lincoln to do?

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week