Download
gilded age politics n.
Skip this Video
Loading SlideShow in 5 Seconds..
Gilded Age Politics PowerPoint Presentation
Download Presentation
Gilded Age Politics

Gilded Age Politics

265 Views Download Presentation
Download Presentation

Gilded Age Politics

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript

  1. Gilded Age Politics Chapter 8 (modern) America: Pathways to the Present

  2. Politics in the Gilded Age • Gilded Age - ‘covered with a thin layer of gold’ • Wealth and prosperity and progress VS. • Urban, labor, and farming problems and big business corruption

  3. Gilded Age Politics

  4. The “Business of Politics” • Laissez-faire • Government should play a very limited role in business • Favored high tariffs on imports (to protect American businesses) • Government subsidies • payment by government to encourage development of certain businesses and/or industries (I.e. RR)

  5. Credit Mobilier Scandal: 1873 “Every Public Question With an Eye Only to the Public Good” • Gov’t awarded Union Pacific (UP) RR loans and land to build Transcontinental RR • Credit Mobilier company - hired to build RR • Credit Mobilier charged UP way too much $$$. • In order for Congress to keep funding, Credit Mobilier offered cheap shares of stock to Congressmen who agreed to support continued funding • Investigated in 1872 - both parties, lots of indivuduals - guilty Harper's Weekly March 15, 1873

  6. Spoils System - Patronage system • Started in American politics with Andrew Jackson (1828) • ‘To the victor, go the spoils of war…’ • Giving of jobs as a reward for loyalty - even to unqualified people

  7. Republicans Appealed to industrialists, bankers, and eastern farmers Strongest in N and upper Midwest Favored tight money supply backed by GOLD High tariffs High pensions for Union soldiers Gov’t aid to RR Strict limit on immigration Enforcement of blue laws - prohibited private activities many considered immoral Democrats Attracted those less privileged Northern immigrant workers, laborers, southern planters, western farmers Claimed to represent ordinary people Favored increased money supply backed by SILVER Lower tariffs Higher farm prices Less gov’t aid to big business Fewer blue laws Political Parties in the Gilded Age

  8. “Waving the Bloody Shirt” • Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) organization of northern Civil War veterans • Campaigned for Republicans • Called on former Union generals as candidates

  9. Democrats Family tradition = Irish, immigrants Religious affiliation = Catholic Appealed to common city laborers Local issues = prohibition Republicans Family tradition = Protestant, old-stock northerners, Religious affiliation = Protestant African-Americans Local issues = against “vices” and for Prohibition in most cases Ethnic Divisions and Gilded Age Politics

  10. Well-Defined Voting Blocs DemocraticBloc RepublicanBloc • White southerners (preservation of white supremacy) • Catholics • Recent immigrants (esp. Jews) • Urban working poor (pro-labor) • Most farmers • Northern whites (pro-business) • African Americans • Northern Protestants • Old WASPs (support for anti-immigrant laws) • Most of the middle class

  11. Figure 18.1 Ethnocultural Voting Patterns in the Midwest, 1870–1892 (p. 521)

  12. Intense Voter Loyalty to the Two MajorPolitical Parties • High Levels of Political Participation

  13. The Money Supply • Most $ in gold and silver coinage or U.S. Treasury notes • Bankers = limit $ supply • Debtors = expand $ supply • Panic of 1873 • Greenback Party of 1877 - expanded $ supply

  14. Money Supply - continued • Silver demonetized in 1873 • Silver discovered in huge quantities in 1873 in Nevada (Comstock Lode) • Sherman Silver Purchase Act of 1890 • Treasury to buy silver monthly • Issue Treasury notes • Increased $ supply some but not enough for farmers and other debtors

  15. The Silver Issue • “Crime of ’73” - demonetization of silver (govt. stopped coining silver). • Bland-Allison Act (1878) - limited silver coinage to $2-$4 mil. per mo. (based on the 16:1 ratio of silver to gold). • Sherman Silver Purchase Act (1890) • The US Treasury must purchase $4.5 mil. oz. of silver a month. • Govt. deposited most silver in the US Treasury rather than circulation.

  16. Spoils System Reform • 1877 - President Rutherford B. Hayes refused to use patronage system • Began attempt at CIVIL SERVICE reform • Split his party (Republicans) in 1878

  17. Rutherford B. Hayes and Civil Service Reform

  18. Republican split • Stalwarts - Sen. Conkling - defended spoils system • Half-Breeds - Sen. Blaine - reform spoils system but maintain party loyalty • Independents - opposed spoils system entirely (Mugwumps)

  19. James Garfield 1880-1881 • Elected 1880 • Half-Breed faction - to reform spoils system but maintain party loyalty • Assassinated by Stalwart supporter - Guiteau - (who expected a job from Garfield and didn’t get it)

  20. Garfield and the Pendleton Act

  21. Chester Arthur • VP w/ Garfield • Became president after assassination • Beneficiary of patronage in NY • Pendleton Civil Service Act of 1883

  22. Pendleton Civil Service Act • Civil Service Commission set up • Tested applicants • Fed employees not required to contribute campaign $$$ • Could not be fired for political reasons

  23. Pendleton Act (1883) • Civil Service Act. • The “Magna Carta” of civil service reform. • 1883 - 14,000 out of 117,000 federal govt. jobs became civil service exam positions. • 1900 - 100,000 out of 200,00 civil service federal govt. jobs.

  24. Election of 1884 - Grover Cleveland • Grover Cleveland - Democrat • Cleveland heavily criticized • Issues: • Favored tight money policies • Opposed high tariffs • Took back 80 million acres from RR • Supported more gov’t regulation of RR

  25. Map 18.1 Presidential Elections of 1880, 1884, and 1888 (p. 517)

  26. RR Regulation • Many complaints of questionable RR practices • Rebates - partial refunds to favored customers • 1877 - Munn v. Illinois - Supreme Court decision allowed states to regulate certain businesses (including RR) • 1886 - decision limited state control in Wabash v. (interstate commerce still unregulated) • 1887 - Interstate Commerce Act set up Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) • Usually had to file suit against RRs and until 1905, lost 15 of 16 cases before the Supreme Court

  27. Cleveland lost bid in 1888 to Republican James Garfield Bandanna, 1888 Election (p. 514)

  28. The Tariff Issue • After the Civil War, Congress raised tariffs to protect new US industries. • Big business wanted to continue this; consumers did not. • 1885 - tariffs earned the US $100 million - In surplus! • Mugwumps opposed it - WHY??? • President Cleveland’s view on tariffs???? • Tariffs became a major issue in the 1888 presidential election.

  29. President Benjamin Harrison - 1888 • Republican - supported business interests • Favored on an increase in tariffs • Awarded huge pensions to dependents of Civil War soldiers • Hurt the economy in the long run • Major Achievement: • Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890

  30. Map 18.1 Presidential Elections of 1880, 1884, and 1888 (p. 517)

  31. Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890 • Outlawed any combination for companies that restrained interstate trade or commerce • Supposed to limit the formation and function of trusts and monopolies • Proved ineffective for over 15 years • Vague wording - enforced rarely • Courts = pro-business

  32. Cleveland’s second term - 1893-1897 (unpopular) • Panic of 1893 • Millions of workers lost jobs or had wages slashed • 1894 - Coxey’s army demanded gov’t create jobs for unemployed • Repealed Sherman Silver Purchase Act • Sent federal troops to Chicago during the Pullman strike of 1894

  33. Populists - Democrats: William Jennings Bryan Working class and farmers Free silver Labor reform “Cross of Gold” speech Republicans: William McKinley New tariff bill (raised) Stronger gold standard “A Full Dinner Pail” Election of 1896

  34. Election of 1896

  35. Map 18.5 The Elections of 1892 and 1896 (p. 540)

  36. Election of 1896: Realignment