Nixon presidency Essay

Submitted By Tamara2016
Words: 3293
Pages: 14

Unit 9
Organizing Principle
The cold war led the United States to pursue an ambivalent policy of confrontation, negotiation and prevention maintenance
I. The Kennedy Administration
A. Election of 1960
1. Republicans nominate Richard Nixon, Eisenhower’s VP
a. Nixon is viewed as tough on communism and experienced in politics and foreign affairs
2. Democrats nominate John Kennedy (Mass) after a hard primary fight with Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas
a. Major weaknesses included inexperience, lack of national recognition, Catholic
b. Chooses Johnson as running mate
3. Republicans campaign on being tough on communism and the experience issue
4. Democrats concentrate on “getting the economy moving again” and falling behind the Russians.
5. First televised presidential debates
a. Kennedy looks young and enthusiastic
b. Nixon and the makeup issue- tired and pale
c. TV viewers thought Kennedy won, radio listeners thought Nixon won.
6. Outcome one of the closest in history
a. Kennedy wins
b. Nixon lose
B. The New Frontier
1. Kennedy’s domestic program
2. “Ask not what your country can do you, ask what you can do for your country”
3. New Frontier wish list
a. Increase the minimum wage to $1.25 per hour
b. Establish the food stamp program
c. Provide health and medical care for those over sixty- five
d. Federal aid to education
e. Tax cut to stimulate the economy
f. Complete integration
4. Successes
a. Housing act passed which was aimed primarily at urban renewal
b. Extension of social security benefits
c. Equal Pay Act of 1963- women’s wages 63.9% of male wages in 1956
d. Federal aid to the mentally handicapped
e. Space program
i. NASA greatly expanded and more fully funded ii. Kennedy’s commitment to space program- “…the nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth.” Speech before congress U.S Congress, May 25, 1961 iii. Alan Shepard becomes the first American in space 5-5-61 iv. John Glenn first American to orbit the earth 2-2-62
5. New Frontier failures
a. Federal aid to education
b. Medicare Bill- defeated by major lobby AMA
c. Why such a dismal record
i. Lack of commitment- Henretta- “Kennedy failed to provide decisive leadership in other domestic fields. He ignored women’s issues and appointed fewer women to federal positions than either Eisenhower or Truman. Most tellingly, he never made civil rights a top priority. He believed he would need the votes of Southern whites to win reelection in 1964, and he sought to hold them in the Democratic coalition by delaying civil rights reforms he had promised in 1960.” ii. He also believed that they wouldn’t pass- iii. Lacked legislative ability
C. The civil rights movement
1. Tout non-violent civil disobedience as the proper course- designed to win support from the middle class for legislative reform
2. Freedom riders attempt to integrate interstate terminals and rest stops- met by violent reaction in the South- 1961
3. Birmingham protests significant- 1963
a. Commissioner Bull Cancer uses water hose, clubs, and police dogs
b. Publicity makes it seem as if authorities are the ones out of control- wins sympathy among moderates.
4. Southern resistance to the integration of the Universities of Alabama and Mississippi
a. AL Gov. George Wallace and MS GOV. Ross Barnett attempt to physically block the entry of black students
b. Federal troops are eventually sent in to force compliance with the court order
5. 1963- March on Washington- 250,000 strong to support Civil Rights Act of 1963
6. Martin Luther King Jr.- I have a dream speech
7. The Civil Rights Bill of 1963
a. Would have provided equal access to public accommodations
b. Instituted deferral suits to force desegregation
c. Eliminated discrimination in federally funded projects
d. Congress fails to enact the legislation
D. Balance sheet of domestic policy
1. Minor success- Kennedy does set the tone for further…