Grant's presidency was plagued with scandals, such as the Sanborn Incident at the Treasury and problems with U.S. Attorney Cyrus I. Scofield. The most famous scandal was the Whiskey Ring fraud in which over $3 million in taxes were taken from the federal government. Orville E. Babcock, the private secretary to the President, was indicted as a member of the ring and escaped conviction only because of a presidential pardon. After the Whiskey Ring, Grant's Secretary of War, William W. Belknap, was involved in an investigation that revealed that he had taken bribes in exchange for the sale of Native American trading posts.Although there is no evidence that Grant himself profited from corruption among his subordinates, he did not take a firm stance against malefactors and failed to react strongly even after their guilt was established. He was weak in his selection of subordinates. He alienated party leaders by giving many posts to his friends and political contributors, rather than listen to their recommendations.
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