Faced with a deadlocked election in 1876, Congress began to negotiate.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: In 1876 the Democrat, Samuel J. Tilden, won the popular vote, 250,000, and had 184 votes in the Elec-toral College, one vote shy of election. Tilden's opponent, Governor Rutherford B. Hayes of Ohio, was far behind at 165 votes and needed all votes of three disputed Southern states to win. All three, Louisiana, South Carolina, and Florida, were controlled by Republicans but they were accusing local Democrats of intimidating Blacks and thus preventing them from voting. Actually, both sides were guilty of fraud. In Louisiana, the members of the electoral commission were all Re-publicans but the chairman, J. Madison Wells offered Louisiana's votes to the highest bidder. Tilden's nephew William Pelton, the acting secretary of the Democratic National Committee, offered Wells $200,000 but the money got there too late and Wells was forced to accept a lesser offer from the Republicans.