When we are writing about progressivism, there were three progressive presidents that were in the White House from 1901 – 1921. That was Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft and Woodrow Wilson. Between these three of our president together, it is said that they were very different however, they did have one thing in common reform policy and regulations in American Society.
This here is about the election of 1912 when the current President Taft who was at the time said that he was not interested in a second term at heart. Theodore Roosevelt who endorsed Taft after he stepped down in 1907 became very unhappy with his actions at the White House, so decided that he would run against him however he was not endorsed as a republican runner.
He decided and determined he would begin his own party The Bull Moose Party. Roosevelt ran on, standing on his past record and his new vision. The two front-runners were Wilson and Roosevelt however in turn this just split the republican votes and Wilson was the elected one.
Theodore Roosevelt was a war hero, known for his action taken during the Spanish-American Wars and leading the charge with assembly of the Calvary Unit “The Rough Riders” He was also known for being a very out spoken courageous man. . Theodore Roosevelt experience extended as a New York City Police Commissioner, Lieutenant Cornel and Governor.
His belief in “speaking softly and carrying a big stick.” Another interesting fact was that Theodore Roosevelt did not traditionally “join the Army” prior to the war he was the Assistant Secretary of the Navy. He was commissioned as Lieutenant Colonial at the beginning of the idea that the United States going to fight a war against Spain in Cuba.
Theodore Roosevelt was not at first elected to be President United States however, he was elected as the Vise President. He was the succors’ of McKinley who was shot in Buffalo, New York on September 06, 1901 and died September 14 1901, this is when the Vice President Theodore Roosevelt became the President of the United States. This here was the beginning our new president vowed to change and lead the country in a direction that he believes was right.
While in office He demanded a “Square Deal”, He thought that industries should be regulated for the interests of the American people by regulating, fixing up what he believed were problems. Such as control of corporations, consumer protection, and conservation. His square deal vision was that every American gets a fair chance, at the time many companies were taking advantage of the people of the United States and created unfair working conditions.
Therefore, came the term “The big stick” in which he was known for threatening to use against companies. He busted 40 other companies up using this method. His vision was for the government to take control by regulating. He did this by implementing Trusts regulation, Meat Inspection Act, Pure Food and Drug Act, Roosevelt Corollary construction of the Panama Canal. His new campaign was about the New Nationalism.
His beliefs were that a president should take any actions for the common good of the people of the United States. “This country belongs to the people who inhabit it. Its resources, its business, its institutions and its laws should be utilized, maintained or altered in whatever manner will best promote the general interest.” (American Experience. 1912) His belief in the preservation of conservation the protecting wilderness to create millions of Ackers protected by the government, this help create the National Parks such as Yosemite Pak, Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon. Another belief was that we should have a mighty military and build the largest Navy in the world and believed that everyone in the world should be aware.
Woodrow Wilson was always in the political arena as he studied government at Princeton University Major in American Politics and also received a PhD in History and Political Science from Johns Hopkins University. Woodrow Wilson was nominated as President of Princeton University, and then was elected Governor of New Jersey, which lead him to be President of the United States. (Bowles, 2011)
While in office Woodrow Wilson took some of Roosevelt’s ideas such as saying all trust were bad trust, he was very aggressive on eliminating all. He disliked big business he thought that all monopolies and trust should be broken up because they were hurting the smaller business and the people of America by doing so he said that he was offering the citizens a New Freedom, by setting up all new Acts.
He set up the Federal Trade Commission Act to regulate business to stop unfair practices. This was where people could bring complaints about trusts to the government and have a hearings on unfair practices. “Clayton Antitrust Act banned business that limited free enterprise “It was important because it eliminated price discrimination, made illegal the acquiring of stock in competing companies to control markets, and restricted mergers of large companies.” (Bowles, 2011) “While he was successful with the passage of the Underwood-Simmons Tariff, which lowered tariffs from 26 to 24 percent.” (Bowles, 2011) During the Wilson administration, we had the first graduation of income tax also Women came to vote during his time in the presidency
Some of Wilson’s beliefs were that by studying public administration governmental efficiency could be increased in our country. He believed that a more moderate and had won the national election on the slogan “He kept us out of war” this was his call during his second term. This was something that he believed that we as a country did not have to fight any wars. In order to get things accomplished. It was as he thought that we did to need to fight wars in order to get our ways, to keep America out of the war in Europe.
He also did not think that we needed a large military, which in turn was shown differently when we entered WWI. “At last a vision has been vouchsafed us of our life as a whole. We see the bad with the good, the debased and decadent with the sound and vital. With this vision we approach new affairs. Our duty is to cleanse, to reconsider, to restore, to correct the evil without impairing the good, to purify and humanize every process of our common life.” (American Experience. 1913)
Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson These two president were the definition of the progressivism they had remarkable ideas and careers. As progressive presidents, they produced quite a few notable achievements. They together set the stage and the direction that our country as a whole was steered in during both their time in office and regulations emplaced into motion that have helped shape our country today. “They were both political architects who did much to shape the landscape of 20th century and especially the office of the U.S. presidency.” (Bowles, 2011) They left behind legacies that made it tough for the next Presidents that followed them into the White House.
American Experience. (1912). Progressive Party Platform. Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/primary-resources/tr-progressive/
American Experience. (1910). The New Nationalism. Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/primary-resources/tr-nationalism/
American Experience. (1913). Woodrow Wilson’s First Inaugural Address. Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/primary-resources/tr-woodrow/
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