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hist 1302 chapter 20 notes

hist 1302 chapter 20 notes - CHAPTER 20 POLITICS AND...

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CHAPTER 20: POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT 1877—1900 I. THE STRUCTURE AND STYLE OF POLITICS A. Campaigns and Elections 1. Justice Waite himself had just a year earlier written the unanimous opinion f the Supreme Court (in Minor v. Happersett ) that the Constitution did not confer suffrage on women. 2. In many states, even immigrants not citizens were eligible to vote and flocked to the polls. African Americans voted regularly in the North and irregularly in the South before being disfranchised at the end of the century. 3. Tickets were distributed by paid party workers known as peddlers or hawkers, who stationed themselves near the polls, each trying to force his ticket on prospective voters. 4. Women wrote partisan literature and gave speeches; Anna Dickinson, one of the period’s most popular orators, was hired by the Republican National Committee to campaign in the East and Midwest. 5. J. Ellen Foster established the Women’s National Republican Association in 1888 and built it into an organizing machine for the Republican Party with numerous state and local clubs. B. Partisan Politics 1. Introduction a. The party balance gave great influence to New York, New Jersey, Ohio, and Indiana, whose evenly divided voters controlled electoral votes that could swing an election either way. 2. Party Loyalty a. Interrelated regional, ethnic, religious, and local factors determined the party affiliations of most Americans. Economic issues, although important to the politics of the era, generally did not decide party ties. b. Not all northerners votes for the Grand Old Party, or GOP. The Republican Party appealed primarily to old-stock Americans and other Protestants. African Americans supported the GOP where they could vote. c. Democrats were strongest in the South, were they stood as the defenders of the traditions of the region’s white population. 3. Party Identities a. To hold its coalition together, each party identified itself with a theme that appealed broadly to all its constituents, while suggesting that it was menaced by the members and objectives of the opposing party. b. Republicans identified their party with nationalism and national unity and attacked the Democrats as an “alliance between the embittered South and the slums of the Northern cities.” c. Democrats portrayed themselves as the party of limited government and “personal liberties,” a theme that appealed to both the racism of white southerners and the resentment immigrants felt about the nativist meddling of the Republicans.
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d. Led by powerful bosses, such as the Democrat Richard Croker of New York and the Republican George Cox of Cincinnati, the machines controlled not only city politics but also municipal governments. 4. Third Parties a. The Prohibition Party persistently championed the abolition of alcohol but also supported electoral reforms such as woman suffrage, economic reforms such as railroad regulation and income taxes, and social reforms including improved race relations.
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