Saturday, September 12, 2009

With the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, our country fell into the hands of Andrew Johnson. With his presidency continuing on until William McKinley, we will view their choices and historical facts during each of their terms. We will see how many made choices that led to multiple oppositions, while others did little to make an impact on our country.

Beginning with Johnson, we see that the Radical Republicans had no shame walking all over his ideas and passing legislation over his veto. He was impeached in 1867 due to him breaking one of the restricting laws placed over him by the Radicals. U.S. Grant was one of the presidents that did little to make an impact on our country, in my opinion. Yes, he was a key general in the war, but did little serving his terms, other than the couple of scandals. Now we mover onto Rutherford B. Hayes,
“Beneficiary of the most fiercely disputed election in American history, Rutherford B. Hayes brought to the Executive Mansion dignity, honesty, and moderate reform.”

“As the last of the log cabin Presidents, James A. Garfield attacked political corruption and won back for the Presidency a measure of prestige it had lost during the Reconstruction period.”
Garfield was not able to make an incredible legacy during his presidency, he was shot and killed the year he became president. He was succeeded by Chester A. Arthur. Under Arthur’s presidency two major acts were passed, the Chinese Exclusion Act and the Pendleton Civil Service Act. The Pendleton Civil Service Act led to a permanent federal civil service system. Grover Cleveland was the president following Arthur. Cleveland vetoed many bills and many acts. When he was elected again he faced a small depression.
“The First Democrat elected after the Civil War, Grover Cleveland was the only President to leave the White House and return for a second term four years later.”

Under Benjamin Harrison many acts were passed, allowing higher duties to be paid on most imports. By looking at the research I have, it seems that many presidents did not pass very many acts or bills at all but Harrison was not one of them. He passed three substantial acts all during one year. Many historians consider his term to be productive. Following Benjamin Harrison was Cleveland who was the first and only president elected in nonconsecutive terms. To end the era known to Mr. Lockwood as “poor politicking” we conclude with the term of William McKinley.
“When McKinley became President, the depression of 1893 had almost run its course and with it the extreme agitation over silver. Deferring action on the money question, he called Congress into special session to enact the highest tariff in history.”
This tariff is known as the McKinley Tariff. McKinley became the third president to be assassinated.

In conclusion I have seen that during this era I could see why Mr. Lockwood calls this era the era of “poor politicking”. It seems to me that this era of presidencies did not really make an impact on our country, some presidents were faced with many opponents while others either didn’t get a chance to make change or did little to make a change.