James K. Polk's Presidency

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What best describes President James K. Polk’s actions regarding Mexico?

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President Polk’s actions toward Mexico can best be described as aggressive and desiring to fulfill the goals of the policy of Manifest Destiny. The United States and Mexico had a dispute over the border with Texas. We insisted it was the Rio Grande River while Mexico insisted it was the Nueces River. We sent a representative to Mexico, John Slidell, to negotiate to try to resolve this dispute. However, the Mexicans wouldn’t meet with us. As a result, we moved our troops into the disputed land, and they were attacked by Mexico. This led to the Mexican-American War of 1846-1848.

President Polk believed in expansion and in Manifest Destiny. As a result, he viewed this war as an opportunity to fulfill the goal of Manifest Destiny of expanding from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. As a result of our victory in this war, we gained most of what is now the southwest part of the United States. For all practical purposes, our goal of Manifest Destiny was now complete.

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