3._George_Bush,_SR

3._George_Bush,_SR - 3/19/09 George H.W. Bush, Sr....

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3/19/09 1 George H.W. Bush, Sr. 1989-1993 A. Election of 1988 • George Bush, Sr. & Dan Quayle – Republicans Democratic primaries • On the Democratic side, there were many contenders during the primaries • Gary Hart seemed to be a front runner until he was destroyed by a sex scandal with Donna Rice • Jessie Jackson with his Rainbow coalition, ran with little success • Michael Dukakis of Massachusetts eventually got the nomination • Dukakis ran with Lloyd Bentsen a Senator from Texas • Bush would win the election 426 electoral votes to 111
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3/19/09 2 B. Domestic Affairs • While Bush’s handling of foreign policy gave him a huge 91% approval rating, most Americans believed that Bush did not have a clear plan for handling domestic problems 1. Bush Abandons Reaganomics • Recession hit in the early 1990’s • Unemployment up • Bush finally had to go back on a campaign promise and levy new taxes to combat the $143 billion deficit – New taxes on: • Gas • Tobacco • Alcohol • Excise taxes on luxury items • Medicare • At the same time of increased taxes Bush cut spending on Medicare and other domestic programs • By the end of Bush’s term, the deficit was up to $290 billion… Congress aggressively approved a plan to cut a cumulative $500 billion from the deficit over the next 5 years Bush inherited the S&L scandal • Bush agreed to close 350 S&L’s • The gov’t would have to cover $166 billion over the next 10 years to pay for the S&L’s going under • In total the S&L’s being deregulated under Reagan and subsequent problems cost the US $300 billion 2. Environment a. Exxon Valdez March 1989 the oil tanker spills more than 240,000 barrels of oil in Alaska’s Prince William Sound 72 million pounds of crude oil into the sea Exxon wound up paying the Alaskan and US gov’t $1.025 billion in the clean-up
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3/19/09 3 b. Pollution • Clean Air Act (October 1990) – Mandated emissions – Cleaner gas must be developed – Cities must reduce ozone 3. Supreme Court • Bush appoints conservative Clarence Thomas • He faced heavy criticism for sexual harassment charges • The term sexual harassment really came from this nomination and started an era of sensitivity of sexual contact in the workplace • Thomas won the nomination by only 1 vote 4. Civil Rights to those with disabilities • American with Disabilities Act (1990) – Bars discrimination against people with physical or mental disabilities
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3/19/09 4 C. Foreign Affairs • Bush’s major triumphs came in foreign affairs • Even more than Reagan, Bush benefited from the historic changes in the Communist world unleashed by Mikhail Gorbachev 1. End of the Cold War a. Eastern Europe 1. Communist Regimes fall Gorbachev’s statements of perestroika and glasnost encouraged Eastern Europe to start to move away from the USSR Anti-communist mvts. started to flourish Poland • The Democratic mvt. In Poland began as early as the 1970’s, but it now had a
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3._George_Bush,_SR - 3/19/09 George H.W. Bush, Sr....

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