ROOSEVELT PROGRESSIVISM AT ITS HEIGHT
election of 1904, the popular Roosevelt soundly drubbed his Democratic opponent Alton B PArker of NY and the Socialist party candidate, Eugene V Debs of Indiana
REGULATING THE RAILROADS
Roosevelt, late 1904, laid out a reform program that included railroad regulation, employers liability for federal employees, greater federal control over corporations, and laws regulating child labor, factory inspections, and slum clearance in the District of Columbia 1903, he had worked with Congress to pass the Elkins Act -prohibit railroad rebates and increase Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) he urged Congress to empower the ICC to set reasonable and nondiscrimatory rates reform governors LaFollette in Wisconsin and Albert Cummins in Iowa urged federal action--skillfully traded congressional support for a strong railroad measure Triumph came with passage of the Hepburn Act of 1906, stregthened the rate making power of the Interstate Commerce Commisson
CLEANING UP FOOD AND DRUGS
Roosevelt was dealing with 2 important bills, these aimed at regulating food and drugs Upton Sinclairs The Jungle (1906) set off a storm of indignation hoping to do for wage slavery what “Harriet Beecher Stowe had done for chattel slavery Sinclair was disappointed at the reaction- was hideous and he threatened to publish the entire “sickening report” if Congress did not act--MEat sales plummeted , demand for Reform grew. MEat Inspection Act of 1906, stronger than the packers wanted, set rules for sanitary meatpacking and govt inspection of meat products Pure Food And Drug Act, passed more easily Samual h Adams, a muckraker, exposed the dangers of patent medicines in several sensational articles in Colliers’.. PAtent medicines=Dr Harvey W Wiley, the chief chemist in the Department of Agriculture, led a “poison squad” of young assts who experimented with medicines reorganized American MEdical Association, joined the fight, and the act passed on June 30, 1906
CONSERVING THE LAND
accomplishments came in the field of conservation, Working closely with Gifford Pinchot, chief of the Forest Service, he established the 1st comprehensive national conservation policy. Roosevelt undertook a major reclamation program, federal REclamation Service, forest preserve program in the Dept of Agriculture. Roosevelt took office in 1901. there were 45 million acres in govt preserves 1908, almost 195 million.
National Conservation Congress attended by 44 Governors and 100s of experts Conservation of NAtural REsources, Pinchot as head, it drew up an inventory of the nations natural resources He attacked “malefactors of great wealth”
Many business leaders blamed him for a severe financial panic in Autumn 1907 Roosevelt prepared in 1908 to turn over the White House to William H Taft Taft soundly defeated the Democratic Standard bearer William Jennings Bryan
THE ORDEAL OF WILLIAM HOWARD TAFT
Taft won the presidential nomination as planned but conservative Republicans beat back the attempts of progressive REpublicans to influence the convention. James S Sherman, vice president and built a platform that reflected conservative views on labor, La Follette, Cummins, Jonathan Dolliver of Iowa, Albert J Beveridge of Indiana, and other progressive Republicans were openly disappointed Taft fels”just a bit like a fish out of water”
1900, MCKinley asked him to head the Phillippine Commission, Later Taft was named the 1st Governor General of the Phillipines 1904, Roosevelt appointed him Secretary of War
Taft had personal charm and infectios humor
Weighing close to 300 lbs, Taft enjoyed conversation, golf and bridge, good food and plenty of rest Reflective, he preferred the life of a judge. but his wife, Helen H Taft, who enjoyed politics, prodded him toward the White House Tafts years as PResident were not happy, Mrs Tafts health soon collapsed the Tarriff, business regulation, and other issues split conservatives and...
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