The Nature of American Politics
Gilded Age (1877-1900)
15th Amendment (1870) – Black Suffrage guaranteed
1872 – Grant re-elected
THE PARTY SYSTEM:
Higher voter turnout, Several smaller parties, supported American businesses, and against European radical ideas
CONGRESS and the ELECTORATE:
Both parties thought that government was supposed to have a small amount of power, it was not supposed to interfere in anything. Senate dominated by republicans, House of Reps by Democrats, 78% voter turnout during Jackson.
Sound Currency – “Specie” (Gold, Silver)
Solid South – 1877-1960s, Democrats were always elected, no republicans running for office
High voter turnout
Boss Tweed, ran Tammany Hall, sold land and made a lot of money, created a ring of people where they fixed elections so that they always were in power.
Tween ring helped immigrants, got loyal voters in 7 years
Thomas Nast – most influential political cartoonist, created santa claus, and elephant from democratic party
Samuel Tilden prosecuted Tweed ring, fell apart in 1870s
“Waving the bloody shirt” – reminded people that democrats started this war, people tended to vote republicans for office, especially for president
Key Terms to know:
STALWART: hardcore republican, Grant, against civil service reform, very in favor of patronage, Roscoe Conkling – Leader. Grant not blamed for scandals.
HALF-BREED: Republicans that supported civil service reform, believed that corruption would be eliminated if civil service reform happened. James Blaine from Maine.
MUGWUMPS: Mugwumps centered around Great Lakes, refused to vote for their party’s nominee (because it was James Blaine, it was exposed to the press that he wrote to the railroad companies that if he came into office, he would give them cheaper stuff, “against corruption” but not really), instead voted for Grover Cleveland.
Rutherford B. Hayes offers a...