The New Deal I

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The New Deal
 I. Franklin D. Roosevelt
    A. Background
        1. Born at family estate at Hyde Park, New York; raised in a wealthy family
        2. Undersecretary of Navy during WWI; increased naval strength
        3. Vice Presidential nominee for Democrats in 1920 (James Cox lost election)
        4. Struck by polio in 1921
            a. Confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life
            b. Disease strengthened his will, patience, tolerance and compassion.
        5. Elected governor of NY in 1928 and 1930
            a. Depression programs for the unemployed, public works, aid to

farmers, and conservation attracted national attention.

            b. Dubbed "traitor to his class" by the rich
            c. Spoke frequently of his concern for the plight of the "forgotten man."
        6. Politically suave and conciliatory
            a. The premier orator of his generation
            b. Really a conservative in many ways: fiscally frugal, not anti-big business

    B. Eleanor Roosevelt

        1. Niece of Theodore Roosevelt
        2. Pushed FDR to maintain political career; vigorously campaigned

on his behalf during the 1920s when FDR was stricken with Polio

       3. Major leader of female wing of the Democratic party in 1920s and early 30s.
        4. Became the "conscience of the New Deal"
            a. Published a syndicated newspaper column
            b. Lobbied extensively for her husband.
        5. Championed causes for women, children, the poor, and African Americans
        6. Most active first lady in American History

II. Election of 1932

    A. Roosevelt -- Democratic candidate (chosen over Al Smith)
        1. "I pledge you, I pledge myself to a new deal for the American people."

        2. Somewhat vague and contradictory during campaign

            a. Promised balanced budget & 25% cuts in gov’t spending -- Criticized present deficits.
            b. Promised gov’t aid for the unemployed
            c. Advocated repeal of Prohibition

    B. Hoover -- Republican candidate

        1. Platform: Higher tariffs and maintenance of the gold standard.
            -- Believed repeal of Hawley-Smoot tariff would be economically devastating.
        2. Reaffirmed faith in American free enterprise and individual initiative
        3. Defensive in tone contrasted with Roosevelt's optimism.

    C. Roosevelt defeated Hoover 472 to 59; Hoover carried only 6 states.

        1. Blacks, traditionally loyal to Republican party of Lincoln, shifted to Democrats
            -- Became vital element in the Democratic party.

    D. "Lame duck" period

        1. Hoover tried unsuccessfully to bind Roosevelt to an anti-

inflationary policy that would have jeopardized future New Deal programs.

        2. Meanwhile, the American economy came to a virtual halt.
        3. Twenty-first Amendment passed by Congress in February, 1933
            a. Repeal of prohibition
            b. March -- new Congress legalized light beer
            c. Amendment ratified by the states and took effect in December,


    E. Twentieth Amendment (adopted in 1933)
        1. Presidential, vice presidential, and congressional terms begin in January
        2. FDR first president to begin new presidential term on January 20th, 1936

III. Effects of the Great Depression by 1932

    A. 25%-33% unemployment
    B. About 25% of banks failed
    C. 25% of farmers lost their farms
    D. Large numbers of businesses failed
    E. Loss of self-worth among millions of Americans

IV. The New Deal

Inaugural Address: "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself."
    A. FDR’s administration
        1. "Brain Trust": FDR selected experts for his "inner circle" rather

than the typical politicians or businessmen.

        2. Notable cabinet members and advisors of FDR’s "inner circle"
            a. Cordell Hull -- Secretary of State
            b. Frances Perkins: first woman cabinet member; Sec. of Labor
            c. Harold L. Ickes -- Secretary of the Interior; headed PWA
            d. Harry Hopkins -- head of FERA and later, WPA
            e. Eleanor Roosevelt

    B. First "Hundred Days" (March 9-June16, 1933)

        1. FDR did not have a developed plan when he took office.
            a. Intended to experiment and find out what worked.
            b. As a result, many programs overlapped or contradicted others.
            c. Sought practical solutions to practical problems.
            d. Used the fireside chats (radio) to communicate with the American people
        2. Plan: Relief, Recovery, and Reform
            a. Short-range goals: relief & immediate recovery, especially first two years
            b. Long-range goals were permanent recovery and reform of

current abuses, especially those that had produced the Great Depression

            c. Progressive ideas: unemployment insurance, old-age insurance,
                minimum-wage, conservation and development of natural

resources, and restrictions on child labor.

        3. Unprecedented passage of legislation in U.S. history
            a. Congress eager to cooperate with FDR due to his strong mandate
            b. Gave the president extraordinary blank-check powers
            c. Some legislation delegated legislative authority to the chief executive.
            d. 1st 100 Days legislation has left a lasting mark on the nation
        4. 1933-1935 programs now called First New Deal
            a. EBRA, Glass-Steagall Act, Truth-in-Securities Act, SEC,


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