Lewis Paul Todd and Merle Curti, Triumph of the American Nation (Orlando, FL: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1986), 401.
The time soon came for the settlers in Kansas to draw up a constitution and organize a territorial government. This brought them face to face with the crucial question: Was slavery to be allowed in Kansas or not? The proslavery forces rushed voters into the territory and elected a proslavery legislature, which promptly passed laws favoring slaveowners. The antislavery forces then drafted a constitution forbidding slavery and elected an antislavery legislature. By the end of 1855, the territory of Kansas had two different constitutions and two different governments - one proslavery, one antislavery. Back in Washington, members of Congress watched the struggle with dismay - and no one with greater dismay than the author of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, Stephen A. Douglas. When Douglas had argued for popular sovereignty, he had hoped to remove the bitter issue of slavery from the heated politics of Congress and to allow the settlers in the territories themselves to decide the issue. Obviously, Douglas's intentions had backfired. Congress was now forced to take sides and, hopelessly divided, it was not at all able to reach a decision.