Highlights from the Progressive Presidents

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Highlights from the Progressive Presidents. Theodore Roosevelt. The First Modern President: TR used executive action to accomplish his progressive agenda – often bypassing Congress. Under TR, the Executive Branch becomes dominant and center of American politics. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Text of Highlights from the Progressive Presidents

Highlights from the Progressive Presidents

Highlights from the Progressive Presidents

Theodore RooseveltThe First Modern President:TR used executive action to accomplish his progressive agenda often bypassing Congress.Under TR, the Executive Branch becomes dominant and center of American politics.Believed that the president could exercise all powers except those denied by the Constitution.

Theodore RooseveltThe First Modern President:First president to use the media to garner support for his agenda.TR used the presidency as a bully pulpit to build popular support.Willing to break with his party to do what he thought was right.

Theodore RooseveltTrust-Buster:Firmly believed that govt had the right to regulate big business to protect the welfare of society.Sought a middle ground between laissez-faire and socialism.TR used the Sherman Anti-Trust Act to go after monopolies.1st target = Northern Securities Company (RR combination)

Theodore RooseveltTrust-Buster:Stregthened the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) with the Elkins Act & Hepburn Act.Good Trusts vs. Bad TrustsSquare Deal:Govt to help achieve economic and social justice.TR negotiates the Anthracite Coal Strike in 1902.Influenced by the muckraking work The Jungle, TR champions greater consumer safety in the Pure Food & Drug Act and Meat Inspection Act.

Theodore RooseveltConservation:Worked with progressive Gifford Pinchot to use executive power to manage western lands.Advocated for a managed approach to conservation.Big Business Exploit ResourcesPinchot/TR Manage ResourcesMuir Environmentalist, NO access to natural resources.

Theodore RooseveltConservation:Established the US Forest Service with Pinchot as 1st Forester.US Forest Service developed innovative bureaucratic procedures to deal with problems central to the Progressive Agenda:Control economic powerResolution of conflict with the communityCoordination, centralization, and extension of govt authority especially the executive.*TRs conservation initiatives pushed the boundaries of executive power and brought him into conflict with western, conservative business interestsand Taft.

William Big Bill TaftCautious Progressive:A close friend & ally of TR. Political career greatly helped by TR. (Gov. of Philippines, Sec. of War)Anointed by TR, Taft elected President in 1904.A former federal judge and constitutional scholar, Taft doubted the legality of parts of TRs conservation program and the constitutionality of his expansion of executive power.

William Howard TaftTaft Highlights:Taft retreated to the right by signing the Payne-Aldrich Tariff, which was backed by wealthy industrialists and opposed by western farmers.Taft supported the Mann-Elkins Act, which increased the powers of the ICC to regulate telecommunications at the time. Taft also beefed-up the Hepburn Act.Continued to go after trusts engaging in monopolistic practices Including U.S. Steel.

William Howard TaftThe break with Roosevelt:Tafts Secretary of the Interior, Richard Ballinger, was a conservative critic of Pinchot and his progressive management of western resources.Ballinger favored a renewal of greater business access to western resources. Pinchot began to use the media to criticize Ballinger/Taft. Pinchot was fired.Pinchot went to TR, who was already upset with Tafts decision to bust a trust he deemed to be good U.S. Steel.

The Election of 1912The Divided GOP:Bad Blood between TR & Taft:TR accused Taft of betraying his progressive legacy. Taft sought to defend his progressive record.TR sought to win the GOP nomination in 1912. Party happy with the more conservative Taft.TR bolts from the party and forms the Progressive or Bull Moose Party.Taft will have the support of the party, and TR the support of the people.

The Election of 1912The Campaign:Taft sought to portray himself as a conservative progressive and vilify TR as a radical.Roosevelt framed Taft as a Judas to progressivism and campaigned to expand his progressive policies.Wilson proposed his New Freedom plan, which called for reforms on tariffs, business, and banking.

Woodrow WilsonThe Progressive Democrat:As governor of New Jersey, Wilsonhad established himself as areformer bytaking on state political machines and party bossesinitiating campaign finance reform to keep money out of electionspassing a primary law to give the people a choice in candidatesestablishing workers compensation laws

Woodrow WilsonAn Activist President:While building on TRs expansion of executive power, Wilson also made great efforts to negotiate with Congress even going to Capital Hill personally.New Freedom Tariffs, Business, BankingTariffsThe Underwood Tariff was the most significant tariff reduction since the Civil War. (Federal revenues were bolstered by the new Federal Income Tax established under the 16th Amend)

Woodrow WilsonCalls for Banking Reform:Calls from Democrats for a more flexible money supply and govt powers to adjust money & credit. Bankers and business were increasingly demanding reform to bring stability to the monetary system.

Progressive reformers wanted a strong federal system that would regulate credit and oversee the nations currency.

Woodrow WilsonFederal Reserve Act:Established 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks to avoid the centralization that had plagued previous national banks.The new Federal Reserve Bank would control the nations money supply by adjusting interest rates.Required that member banks maintain a certain amount of money to offset deposits. This established a reserve fund for economic crisis.

Woodrow WilsonBusiness Reforms:The Clayton Anti-Trust Act removed loop-holes in the Sherman Anti-Trust Law, and excluded farmers & unions from anti-trust prosecution.Created the Federal Trade Commision, which was a govt watch-dog board empowered to investigate corrupt, unfair, and anti-competitive business practices.

Woodrow WilsonSocial Reform:As a Southern Democrat, Wilsonwas not a strong advocate ofsocial reform, which he felt wasthe domain of the states. Wilson also sympathized with Southern efforts to reestablish white rule and segregated the federal govt . While Wilson voted in favor of Womens suffrage, he did not actively campaign for the issue.