The Populist Movement: The Value of Third Parties

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In which presidential campaign did the Populists first appear? The Populists wrote the Omaha Platform in 1892.

3.What groups made up the Populist movement? Populists included farmers, laborers, and socialists. 4.In what sections of the country did the Populists gain their greatest support?
Most populists came from the west or the south 5.List ten political and economic reforms the Populists proposed in their platform:
Free and unlimited coinage of silver at a sixteen to one ratio with gold Increase in the amount of money in circulation Graduated income tax
Government ownership of railroads, telephones and telegraphs Tariff reduction
Direct election of senators
Secret ballot
Postal savings bank
Immigration restrictions
Initiative and referendum
Single term presidency
Subtreasury plan to help finance farmers at harvest time.

6.To what extent did Populists continue to focus on grievances of earlier movements?
The Greenback Party of the 1870s pushed for inflation based on free silver, and they worked for regulation, if not public ownership, of the railroads as was called for by the Grange movement and the Farmer’s Alliance. What percent of the total popular vote in 1892 did each party get?
Republicans (44%), Democrats (47%), Populists (9%) 7. How do these percentages explain why the Democrats adopted several Populist planks and nominated the Populist candidate as their own nominee in 1896?
The Populist vote of nearly 9 percent in the 1892 election attracted the attention of both major political parties. However, the Republicans were philosophically further removed from the Populists and would have been less likely to adopt their positions.
The Populist vote, cast as a bloc, could have altered the outcome of the 1892 election.
This is a point the Democrats noted in the national convention of 1896.

8. How did William Jennings Bryan’s “Cross of Gold” speech prove to be both a strength and a weakness of

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