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The 1912 Presidential Election - Essay Example

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The paper “The 1912 Presidential Election” will look at the US Presidential Election of 1912, which is widely heralded as an event that changed the nation. The contest involved four prominent candidates – Woodrow Wilson, Theodore Roosevelt, William Taft and Eugene Debs…
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The 1912 Presidential Election
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The 1912 Presidential Election

Download file to see previous pages... All candidates were aware of the massive changes sweeping across the American society and made dedicated efforts to answer the reforms necessary to maintain the Progressive order. Progressivism also necessitated the strategy of each candidate towards fighting corruption, modernizing every element of state machinery and reforming the economy in every possible way. Progressivism and the 1912 Presidential Election Israel says that the fact that the 1912 US Presidential election brought forth a significant reform in the American political system is simple enough to highlight the crucial role played by the Progressive Party (78). The Progressive Party not only succeeded in rising to prominence against the two main parties (the Democrats and the Republicans) but also succeeded in wielding significant influence over the next four years on issues on national importance. This is evident since the progressive party gained over 30% of the vote and had a strong contender – Theodore Roosevelt – as its presidential candidate (Berkin 34). ...
 The Progressive Party strongly favored support for labor unions and wanted to maintain a tight grip on business enterprises in an effort to regulate American industry. Milkis says that these reformist beliefs stem from the very life of Roosevelt, who spent his early years growing up in a working-class neighborhood in New York (63). One of the primary persons responsible for the departure of Roosevelt was the incumbent president – William Taft. Taft had previously served under Roosevelt’s administration as the ‘Secretary of War’ until 1908 when he was finally chosen as Roosevelt’s successor to be president. However, Taft’s policies grew increasingly conservative in nature and began to create a rift within the party leading to a split in 1912 (Morrisey 25). Unlike Roosevelt, Taft favored lesser regulatory oversight on businesses and more freedom in the hands of business leaders. Taft reasoned that such freedom was essential for sustaining innovation and productivity in the American economy and that he favored refraining from any external control on American enterprises unless absolutely necessary (Eisenstark 52). Against the backdrop of these two warring parties, the Democrats fielded Woodrow Wilson as their presidential candidate. The in-fighting between the two factions of the Republican Party proved favorable for Wilson as he had to contend with a disorganized opposition. In fact, these trends helped the Democrats resolve their internal differences and helped them evolve into a significant political force. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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