How Did Arthur Become President During The Gilded Age

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During the Gilded Age 1876-1900, the presidents were not successful at passing a lot of legislation. Only five major bills made it through Congress to the president's desk. There was, however, a wide voter participation and interest in the political process; most elections saw about an 80% turnout. Yet the unique dilemmas created by industrialization, urbanization, and immigration were met with inactiveness and misunderstanding. At the national level, public interests tended to dominate the political scene. All the presidents from Abraham Lincoln’s death until Teddy Roosevelt's accession were, for the most part, weak. They were more or less decent men, but none were activists. Presidents and cabinet members were hunted by jobseekers and political …show more content…

Arthur became the president after the assassination of James A Garfield. Arthur ensured himself a place in history as a reformed crook. Upon becoming president, Arthur refused to participate in the conflict between party factions; he was determined to be his own man and to work to earn the respect of the American people. Well aware that the assassin of his predecessor had been a frustrated office seeker, he recognized that reform in that area was necessary. He then pushed Congress for the Pendleton Act of 1883. It was the first law specifically intended to begin the professional handling of the civil service. The creation of the first Civil Service Commission was the beginning of the end of the spoils system, or internal corruption of favors for promotion. The Pendleton Act called for a merit system for promotions within the service and ensured steadiness in federal employees from one administration to the next. In another area, Arthur signed the first Federal immigration law that excluded the poor, criminals, and the mentally ill. Congress also passed a Chinese Exclusion Act that would have made Chinese immigration illegal for twenty years and restricted citizenship to Chinese. Although Arthur vetoed the original bill, he later signed a revised bill that was not as harsh. In foreign affairs, Arthur signed a treaty which made the United States the first Western country to establish diplomatic relations with Korea. His most significant action in the …show more content…

With increasing in industrialization, the workplace had become more dangerous, and businesses refused to accept responsibility for injuries to workers. Great fortunes were amassed by the industries and millions of immigrants found hope on the idea America's opportunities. Technology began to replace the need for labor, which in turn lead farmers become more efficient in producing crops, and supplies tended to surpass demand regularly, consequently lowering prices. Therefore making the farmers struggle, and essentially making the poor man poorer and the rich man richer. The Gilded Age was a time of progress for the country. Production expanded in unimaginable proportions, living standards rose dramatically as thousands of white collar jobs were created. In the end, all progress had a price. Labor was nearly crushed, and reform became essential, and it came in the form of the Progressive

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