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JFK (1961 – 1963) Camelot. John F. Kennedy 1961-1963. The Election of 1960. The election of 1960 was the closest since 1884; Kennedy defeated Richard Nixon by fewer than 119,000 votes. Did You Know?.

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John F. Kennedy



The Election of 1960

The election of 1960

was the closest since

1884; Kennedy

defeated Richard

Nixon by fewer than

119,000 votes.


Did You Know?

  • • He was a decorated naval officer in World War II.• He received the Pulitzer Prize for his book, "Profiles in Courage."• He served exactly 1,000 days in office.• He was the first president born in the 20th century and the youngest president ever elected.
  • He is the only Roman
  • Catholic president
  • He could read 1600 words a minute.

Kennedy’s Inaugural Address

Kennedy was the youngest person ever to be elected president. His

youth helped provide the theme to his inaugural address:

“Let the word go forth…

That the torch has been

passed to a new

generation of Americans…

The energy, the faith, the

devotion which we bring

to this endeavor will light

our country and all who

serve it…And so, my fellow

Americans-ask not what

your country can do for

you-ask what you can do

for your country.”


The Camelot Years

With JFK’s

youthful glamour

and his talented

advisors, the

Kennedy White

House reminded

many of a modern-

day Camelot, the

mythical court of

King Arthur.

kennedy s plan
Kennedy’s Plan
  • New Frontier
    • Aid to education
    • Health insurance
    • Create a Department of Urban Affairs
    • Help the migrant workers
    • “ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country?
    • Had difficulty passing “New Frontier Programs” due to a thin mandate of approval -- CONGRESS

The New Frontier

President Kennedy’s

legislative program to

provide medical care

for the elderly….

To rebuild blighted

urban areas….


To aid education….

To bolster the national



To increase

international aid….

To expand the space



To provide volunteer

assistance to developing

nations in Asia, Africa,

and Latin America.

And to promote civil rights.

reformist court warren court reforms
Reformist Court?Warren Court Reforms
  • Baker vs Carr(62) – federal courts can hear lawsuits seeking state authorities to redraw electoral districts
  • Reynolds vs Simms(64) – state legislative districts should be equal in population
  • Heart of Atlanta Motel vs US(64) – Desegregation established in the Civili Right Act of 1964 is legal
  • Loving v Virginia(67) – States may not ban interracial marriage
  • Mapp v Ohio – unlawfully seized evidence is inadmissible in court
  • Gideon vs Wainwright – Suspects are entitled to a court appointed attorney if unable to afford one on their own
  • Escobedo vs Illinois – Accused persons have the right to an attorney during questioning
  • Miranda vs Arizona – police must inform suspects of their rights during the arrest process
Engel vs. Vitale – state-mandated prayer in school banned
  • Abbington School District vs. Schemp – state-mandated Bible readings in school banned
  • New York Times vs Sullivan – Celebrities may sue the media for libel in certain circumstances
kennedy global challenges
Kennedy & Global Challenges
  • PEACE CORPS = purpose is to help less developed countries fight poverty by sending young Americans to perform humanitarian services
    • Bolivia
    • Chad
    • ** one of Kennedy’s lasting legacies
bay of pigs
Bay Of Pigs
  • 1959 Castro over throws Batista in Cuba and established ties with the USSR
    • USSR to close for comfort –
    • CIA begins to train and arm Cuban Exiles ( La Brigada) – used as an invasion force
    • April 17, 1961 – invade CUBA ( HUGE FAILURE)
CUBAN MISSILE CRISIS – October 22, Kennedy announced to the US that spy planes had taken aerial photos of CUBA – USSR had placed missiles locked and loaded and aimed at US
    • October 28 RESOLVE
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration
  • Created in 1958
  • Civilian agency which was created to take over space exploration programs from the various military branches to increase coordination and efficiency
yuri gagarin
Yuri Gagarin
  • 1934 – 1968
  • Soviet “cosmonaut” who became the first man in space in April of 1961
  • Declared a “Hero of the Soviet Union,” he was never allowed to return to space due to his value as an instrument of propaganda; instead, he was sent on a world tour to promote Soviet superiority
  • Ironically, he later died in a plane crash
project mercury
Project Mercury
  • 1959 – 1963
  • NASA’s first program designed to put an American in space
  • Capsule could carry only a single astronaut
  • Cost $384 million, but succeeded at getting the US’ manned space program off the ground
john glenn
John Glenn
  • 1921 – Present
  • US Marine pilot who became the first American to orbit the earth in 1962
  • Went on to serve as US Senator from Ohio from 1974 – 1999
  • In 1998, became the oldest person to fly in space when he took part in a shuttle mission at age 77
kennedy targets the moon
Kennedy Targets the Moon
  • “[We] commit … before this decade is out, to landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth … But why, some say, the moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? …We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win”
project gemini
Project Gemini
  • 1965 – 1966
  • Could carry 2 astronauts
  • 10 manned flights cost $5.4 billion
  • Purpose was to develop the technologies that would be needed to make longer space flights possible (such as a trip to the moon and back)
apollo program
Apollo Program
  • Series of 6 manned missions to the moon between 1969 and 1972
  • Each Apollo craft carried 3 astronauts
  • Suffered two major accidents: during the Apollo I training exercise in 1967, 3 astronauts died in an oxygen fire, and an explosion onboard Apollo 13 forced the crew to abort the mission
  • Cost $25.4 billion
the eagle has landed
“The Eagle has landed”
  • July 20, 1969
  • Apollo 11 became the first manned-mission to land on the moon after a 4 day journey
  • Represented a major victory for the US, since we had finally surpassed Soviet achievement in space (to this day, no other nation has landed astronauts on the moon)
neil armstrong
Neil Armstrong
  • 1930 – Present
  • The first of only 12 men to walk on the moon
  • Former Navy pilot and Korean War veteran, Armstrong retired from NASA almost immediately after returning from the moon and became a college professor
that s one small step for a man
“That’s one small step for a man …”
  • “… one giant leap for mankind.”
  • After the success of the Apollo program, Americans tired of the “space race” – we had clearly beaten the Soviets and Americans were now distracted by more “down to earth” matters such as the Vietnam War, Civil Rights, and Watergate
jfk assassination

JFK Assassination

A Conspiracy?

motorcade route
Motorcade Route
  • Dealey Plaza
  • Main Street
  • Right on Houston St.
  • Hard Left on Elm St.
  • Texas School Book


  • Grassy Knoll
  • Triple Underpass
civil rights act 1964
Civil Rights Act 1964
  • Began by Kennedy during his administration
  • It intended to promote the equality of the African American Race
    • Prohibited discrimination due to race, gender, creed, or ethnicity
Warren Commission – concluded that Oswald had shot Kennedy
  • LBJ ( Great Society) – WAR ON POVERTY
lbj s great society
LBJ’s “Great Society”
  • Johnson’s programs aimed at eliminating poverty and racial injustice – a rebirth of JFK’s “New Frontier”
  • Proposed major reforms in civil rights, welfare, education, health, arts & culture, and transportation
civil rights
Civil Rights
  • Civil Rights Act of 1964: Banned segregation of public facilities, racial discrimination in hiring
  • Voting Rights Act of 1965: banned literacy tests
  • Immigration and Nationality Services Act of 1965: abolished national-origin immigration quotas
  • Civil Rights Act of 1968: banned housing discrimination, provided constitutional protections to Native Americans
war on poverty
“War on Poverty”
  • Johnson believed that the best way to deal with poverty was not simply to raise the incomes of the poor but to help them better themselves through education, job training, and community development.
  • Between 1964 and 1966, LBJ spent $3 billion on antipoverty programs
economic opportunity act of 1964
Economic Opportunity Act of 1964
  • Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO): oversaw community-based antipoverty programs
  • Neighborhood Youth Corp: provided job experience to poor urban teens while encouraging them to graduate high school
  • Job Corps: helped disadvantaged youth gain marketable job skills
  • Volunteers In Service To America (VISTA): domestic version of the Peace Corps
  • Head Start: offered pre-school for children of the poor
  • Upward Bound: program which helps poor teens go to college
  • Elementary & Secondary Education Act of 1965: provided federal money for schools to the states (current form of program is called “No Child Left Behind”)
  • Higher Education Act of 1965: increased federal money to universities, provided money for scholarships for poor students
  • Bilingual Education Act of 1968: provided federal money for establishment of ESL programs
  • Food Stamps: provided assistance to low-income families by subsidizing food expenses
  • Medicare: provides no-cost health insurance to senior citizens
  • Medicaid: subsidized health care program for poor or disabled persons
arts culture
Arts & Culture
  • National Endowment for the Arts: provided federal funds for arts education
  • National Endowment for the Humanities: provided federal funds for humanities (English, History) education
  • Public Broadcasting Service (PBS): provides noncommercial educational television programming
  • National Public Radio (NPR): provides noncommercial educational radio programming
  • National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966
  • Highway Safety Act of 1966
  • Both set new federal guidelines for safety in automobile design and road design and construction
  • Largely the result of increased public awareness of traffic safety due to Ralph Nader’s Unsafe at Any Speed which exposed car makers’ reluctance to improve safety due to increased costs
lbj declines to run again
LBJ Declines to Run Again
  • Due to the unpopular war in Vietnam, the Democratic Party was badly divided, with no one (including LBJ) appearing to be the front runner for the 1968 presidential nomination
  • The expense of the war was keeping LBJ from being able to fund his Great Society programs sufficiently enough to make them successful
  • Johnson surprised everyone when he announced in March 1968, "I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your President.“
robert kennedy assassination
Robert Kennedy Assassination
  • The top candidate to win the Democratic nomination, JFK’s younger brother Robert, was shot and killed on June 6, 1968 by a Palestinian who was angry over Kennedy’s support of Israel
  • “Some men see things as they are and say why. I dream things that never were and say why not.”
election of 1968
Election of 1968
  • After a tumultuous Democratic National Convention in Chicago, which saw widespread protests and violent clashes with police by antiwar protestors, the Democratic Party nominated LBJ’s Vice-President Hubert Humphrey
  • The Republicans nominated Richard Nixon
  • George Wallace ran as an independent, pro-segregation candidate
  • Nixon won by a wide margin
vietnam vexations
Vietnam Vexations
  • America under LBJ was floundering in Vietnam & was being crucified for being there
  • Fullbright Commission
  • CIA – “cointelpro”
vietnam topples johnson
Vietnam Topples Johnson
  • American Casualties in Vietnam were mounting and the public eye was dscontent
    • TET
    • Johnson also saw a challenge to the Democratic ticket from RFK and Eugene McCarthy as the Democratic party began to split over Vietnam
    • March 31, 1968 Johnson declared no more troops in NAM
June 5, 1968 Robert Kennedy was assassinated and the Democratic ticket went to Hubert Humphrey
  • Republicans responded with NIXON and SPIRO AGNEW
  • Third Party Candidate was George Wallace – racist – and former governor of Alabama
economy stagnates in the 70s
Economy Stagnates in the 70s
  • After the flurry of economic growth in the 50s and 60s – US economy steadily declines during the 70s
    • More women & teens in the work force – less skill – less money
    • LBJs spending on the Vietnam War and on the GREAT SOCIETY
    • US did not continue advancing in technology
      • Caught by Japanese and Germans in Industry
nixon vietnamizes the war
Nixon “Vietnamizes” the War
  • Upon taking office – Nixon Urged Americans to stop tearing each other apart
  • Nixon very skilled in foreign affairs and to cope with VIETNAM – he adopted a policy called Vietnamization – where 540,000 American Troops would be pulled out of the Southeast Nation
  • The South Vietnamese would slowly fight their own WAR – US would supply arms and $ --- called NIXON DOCTRINE
War was generally fought by the least privileged Americans – since college students and critically skilled civilians were exempt!
    • Solders fought through grimy mud and jungle
  • My Lai Massacre – American troops brutally massacred innocent women and children in the village of My Lai – led more opposition to the war
  • 1970, Nixon ordered an attack on Cambodia Vietnam’s neighbor
cambodianizing the vietnam war
Cambodianizing the Vietnam WAR
  • North Vietnam had been using Cambodia as a springboard for funneling troops and arms, and on April 29 1970 Nixon ordered an attack on Cambodia to stop this action
  • Much Uproar was caused over this
    • Kent State University
    • Jackson State
      • After 2 months Nixon removes troops
      • This incident splits the doves and the hawks further
nixon s d tente with beijing moscow
Nixon’s Détente with Beijing & Moscow
  • Meanwhile, China and the Soviet Union were clashing over their own interpretation of Marxism – Nixon seizes this as a chance to relax tension
  • Sends Henry Kissinger ( National Security Advisor) to china to encourage better relations (Successful)
  • Nixon then traveled to the USSR1972 – wanted foodstuffs – and were anxious over US-China relations – entered into a deal where US would sell 750 million worth of wheat, corn, and other cereals --- DETENTE
d tente nixon visits china
Détente & Nixon Visits China
  • Nixon looked to improve relations with both communist China and the Soviet Union
  • In 1972, Nixon became the first US president to visit China, hoping to exploit a rift between the Chinese and Russians and gain influence
  • The Soviets responded by welcoming Nixon to Moscow just 3 months later
ABM TREATY (Anti Ballistic Missles)
  • SALT Talks (Strategic Arms Limitations Talks)
  • MIRV - multiple independently targetable reentry vehicle (MIRV) warhead is a collection of nuclear weapons carried on a single intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) or a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM
nixon on the home front new federalism
Nixon on the Home Front“NEW FEDERALISM”
  • Expanded Great Society programs by increasing $ for Medicare and Medicaid as well as AFDC & SSI
  • Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) was a federal assistance program in effect from 1935 to 1996, which was administered by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. This program provided financial assistance to children whose families had low or no income.[1]

Phildelphia Plan

    • Affirmative action
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • OSHA
  • Clean Air Act of 1970
  • Endangered Species Act of 1973
nixon landslide
Nixon Landslide
  • 1972 – North Vietnam attacked again – repelled by US and South Vietnamese forces since China nor Russia stepped in to help
  • 72 presidential election
    • George McGovern & Thomas Eagleton vs Nixon & Agnew
    • Landslide win
  • June 17, 1972: 5 men were caught breaking into the Democratic Party’s national headquarters in the Watergate complex of Washington DC
  • All 5 were tied to the Republican Party’s Committee to Re-Elect the President (CReeP)
  • Investigative journalists uncovered evidence tying several key Nixon aides directly to the plot, forcing Nixon to dismiss them
the cover up
The Cover-Up
  • Nixon appointed Archibald Cox as special prosecutor to oversee the Watergate investigation
  • When it was discovered that Nixon had an audio-recording system that taped all conversations within the Oval Office, Cox subpoenaed the tapes
  • The tapes proved that Nixon had attempted to cover-up his aides’ involvement in the break-in, so he ordered Cox to drop the subpoena
the saturday night massacre
The Saturday Night Massacre
  • When Cox refused to drop the subpoena, Nixon demanded that Cox’s boss, the Attorney General, fire him
  • Both the Attorney General and his top assistant resigned rather than fire Cox, but the third-ranking officer in the Department of Justice gave in to the president’s demand
  • A new special prosecutor was appointed, but by this time the Senate was conducting its own investigation and demanded the tapes
us v nixon
US v Nixon
  • 1974
  • Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the president can not invoke executive privilege to withhold evidence that is “demonstrably relevant in a criminal trial”
  • Nixon was ordered to turn over tape recordings of conversations within the Oval Office relevant to the Watergate cover-up
secret bombing of cambodia war powers act
Secret bombing of Cambodia & War Powers Act
  • Discovered that there was bombings in Cambodia since 1969 on North Vietnamese even though the government had promised to respect Cambodia’s Neutrality
    • Credibility ?
  • Nixon ended the bombing 1973
  • Cambodia taken over by POL POT (genocide) 2million dead
  • War Powers Act 1973
arab oil embargo energy crsis
Arab Oil Embargo & Energy Crsis
  • After the US backed Israel in its war against Syria & Egypt, which had been trying to regain territory lost in the Six Day War – Arabs imposed an oil sanction or embargo
    • Speed limit of 55mph imposed
    • Alaskan pipeline approved
    • Oil imports > oil exports = expensive energy
unmaking of a president
Unmaking of a President
  • July 24, 1974 the Supreme Court ruled that Nixon had to give up all tapes to Congress
  • Late in July 1974 the House approved its first article for impeachment for obstruction of the administration of justice
  • August 5, 1974 Nixon released that last 3 tapes that held the most damaging info
    • Realized he would be convicted if impeached – he resigns August 8th
    • Lesson – the Constitution works
impeachable offenses
Impeachable Offenses
  • Conspiracy to Obstruct Justice
  • Abuse of Power
  • Contempt of Congress
  • Unconstitutional Bombing of


the first unelected president
The First Unelected President
  • Gerald Ford was the first unelected President ever, since his name had been submitted by Nixon as VP Candidate. All the other VP’s that had ascended to presidency had at least been supported as running mates of the president that had been elected
  • Viewed as a stupid jock of a president – popularity further sank when he pardoned NIXON “buddy deal”
  • July 1975 – Ford signed the Helesinki records – recognized soviet boundaries
defeat in vietnam
Defeat in Vietnam
  • Disastrously for Ford, South Vietnam fell in 1975 and American troops had to be evacuated, the last on April 29th 1975
  • America seemed to have lost a LOT of RESPECT