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The Republican Influence

The Republican Influence - Progressive reforms Antitrust...

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Unformatted text preview: Progressive reforms Antitrust regulations and the creation of the Antitrust Federal Trade Commission of 1914 limited corporations ability to merge together corporations Progressive income tax implemented in Progressive 1913 – the tax was 1% for income over $3,000 (the average worker made $580 a year in 1900) year Income tax today – individual $0-$8,350 – 10% $0-$8,350 10% $8,350-$33,950 -15% $8,350-$33,950 15% $33,950-$82,250-25% $82,250-$171,550-28% $171,550-$372,950-33% $372,950+ 35% Median individual income: $30,881 The top 5% (above $145,00) pays 60% of the income The taxes in the US taxes Bottom 50% (below $30,881) pays about 3% The Republican Influence Following the Democratic presidency of Wilson, The Following Republican party shifted towards economic libertarianism and reversed progressive taxation began under Wilson began Rejecting the social reforms of the Progressive Era, Rejecting the first two Republican Presidents of the 1920s– the Harding and Coolidge–put their faith in big business Harding and less in government, both at home and abroad and Harding and the Tea Pot Dome • In 1920 Harding’s promise of a “return to normalcy” hit a responsive chord among Americans. Many observers saw his landslide election over Democrat James A. Cox as a rejection of Wilson’s internationalism as well as high-minded Progressive reforms and higher taxes on the wealthy. • Harding relied on the advice of a talented group of officials named to the cabinet and a group of old friends from Ohio. Some of these friends used their positions to line their pockets with money. One advisor ended in jail, two resigned in disgrace, and two more killed themselves Harding dies, plagued by scandal Of the many scandalous situations that occurred during Harding’s administration, the Teapot Dome became the most famous. Harding’s Secretary of the Interior, Albert Fell, leased government oil fields to wealthy friends in exchange for bribes. • Investigations into the scandals left Harding depressed. He fell ill and died, bringing Vice President Calvin Coolidge to the presidency. Silent Cal With his upright Yankee background and unquestioned reputation for honesty, Coolidge soon erased the damage the Harding scandals had caused the Republican administration. • Coolidge carried out Harding’s pro-business programs and reversed progressive taxes brought on by Wilson. The courts Coolidge appointed Supreme Court justices Coolidge who strictly interpreted the commerce clause (which says Congress can regulate trade “among the several states) to mean that Congress could not regulate local economic conditions economic Regulatory agencies Coolidge appointed pro-business people to Coolidge regulatory bodies that overlooked antitrust regulations regulations Andrew Mellon, secretary of the treasury under Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover, almost completely overturned the progressive tax policies of the Wilson years. He cut government spending and reduced taxes on corporations and on people with high incomes. Herbert Hoover • Hoover, the secretary of commerce under both Harding and Coolidge, became famous as director of the Belgian Relief Committee • Hoover also supported a number of reforms–eighthour workdays in major industries, improved nutrition for children, conservation of natural resources, and control of coastline oil pollution • Hoover believed above all in volunteer effort and free enterprise, hoping that business would show a new spirit of public service. Republican Foreign Policy In the 1920s the government encouraged United States firms to dramatically expand their international business, thus extending influence over other nations. Charles G. Dawes, a wealthy Chicago banker, negotiated loans from private American banks so Germany could pay its reparations. The so-called Dawes Plan helped to avoid war and allowed the Allies to use German reparations to repay some of their debts to the United States How to avoid war • To stay clear of Europe’s power struggles, the United States embarked on a twofold policy: (1) To reduce the weapons of war, the United States held the Washington Conference–the first successful disarmament conference in modern history. (2) To disentangle itself from future conflicts, the United States joined other nations in signing the Kellogg-Briand Pact, which outlawed war. ...
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