Farmer’s Fight - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  1. Farmer’s Fight

  2. Agricultural changes • Commercialized/Specialized • Falling Prices due to: • Increased production • Global Competition • Static Money Supply • Rising Costs • Trusts • Middlemen • Railroads • Elevators • Property taxes, but no income tax Problems

  3. National Grange Movement • 1868 – Oliver Kelley – Co-ops to fight elevators and railroads • Lobbied state governments for regulation • Munn vs. Illinois • State has the right to regulate business if in the public’s best interest Fighting Back

  4. Interstate Commerce Act (1886) • Railroads crossed state lines, Wabash vs. Illinois said that states couldn’t regulate interstate commerce • Required railroads to be reasonable and just, set up ICC, railroads actually helped more than farmers Fighting Back, cont’d

  5. National Alliance of Farmers • Ocala, FL • Attacked major parties as business servants • Platforms: • Direct election of senators • Lower Tariff Rates • Graduated income tax • New federal banking system • Increased money supply • Eventually becomes Populist Movement/Party • Many platforms spread to progressives Ocala Platform

  6. Omaha Platform: • Politically • direct popular election of U.S. Senators • enacting of state laws by voters through initiatives and referendums • Economically • unlimited coinage of silver • graduated income tax • Government ownership of railroads • telegraph and telephone systems owned and operated by government • loans and federal warehouses for farmers • eight hour work day. • Attempted to form a political alliance between poor whites and poor blacks Populism

  7. 1892 • Presidential candidate: James Weaver (IA) 1million votes and 22 electoral votes • Ticket failed in South Populism’s high Water Mark

  8. Bryan, Democrats, and Populists • Dems divided between gold and silver forces • Prosilver had the most support • WJB gives “Cross of Gold” speech • Coinage at 16 to 1 (market was 32 to 1 • Populists and Democrats fuse • Gold Democrats and Cleveland break away A Turning Point in American Politics: 1896

  9. McKinley and the Republicans • McKinley (OH) • Marcus Hanna runs well-funded campaign • Blamed Democrats for economic problems • Platform of high tariff and gold standard A Turning Point in American Politics: 1896

  10. Campaign • GOP early advantage • Bryan covered 18,000 miles by train giving 600 speeches • Millions of dollars from business leaders to McKinley • “Front Porch Campaign” • Death knell • Rise in wheat prices • Employers told workers they would shut factories down if WJB was elected A Turning Point in American Politics: 1896

  11. End of Gilded Age stagnation • Beginning of Republican domination • End of Populists • Many of the populist policies eventually enacted • Urban, business, conservative, upper middle class dominance • Beginning of modern politics • Campaign financing • McKinley is a warmonger Significance of 1896

  12. Roosevelt through Taft and Wilson • Attitudes • Changing country • Diverse Groups • Who were Progressives? • Middle class urban residents • Missionary spirit/social responsibility/honesty • Strong Leadership across parties • Roosevelt and Lafollette in GOP • William Jennings Bryand and Wilson in Dems Progressive Origins

  13. Reformers (Jefferson, Jackson, Populist tradition) • Revolution in thinking from Darwin • Pragmatism/Experimentation with ideas and laws • Scientific Management • Frederick W. Taylor – factories and timing workers • Government could be made more efficient Philosophy

  14. Voter Reform • Secret Ballot • Direct primaries • Direct Election of U.S. Senators (17th Amendment)] • Initiative • Referendum • Recall • Social Welfare Political Reform

  15. Municipal Reform • Public Utilities • City managers and Commissions • State Reform • Robert LaFollette (WI) – direct primary, tax reform, railroad regulation • Temperance and Prohibition • 18th Amendment Political Reform