Politics During The Gilded Age Essay

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The Gilded Age is mostly remember for the ‘boom’ in industrialism in the United States, industries such as the Oil and the Railroad ones grew in numbers and made many wealthy and some even part of history, but politics also had its role in this era. Politics during the Gilded Age (which lasted from 1870 to 1895) was something most of the United States citizen’s used as a “pastime,” a person could make a living out of politics due to corruption. During this era there were also many other factors that influenced other people to become aware of politics (which is what caused a raise in voter participation as high as 80% in 1876). Among the factors, influencing politics, the most important ones were: patronage, sectional loyalty, ethnicity, and …show more content…

This patronage system, known as the Spoils System, gave loyal supporters (of a political party) government jobs at the local, state, or even federal level, if that party won the important elections that gave it power. Choosing the correct party was the most important decision of some supporters since their decision could mean to have a paycheck or no job at all. “To the victor go the spoils,” was one of the phrases used to describe the spoils system and since it could give people jobs in an instance. This system prompted many government employees to vote in great numbers so they could retain their jobs. The Spoils System brought up many controversies about its functionality even inside parties, and this led to separation because of politician’s …show more content…

Since the Republican Party remained divided, the Mugwumps announced publicly that they would support Grover Cleveland rather than their own candidate because “the paramount issue this year is moral rather than political” (meaning that they did not want the government to fall back into corruption with David G. Blaine being president). This was until the Buffalo Telegraph unveiled the truth that Cleveland had fathered an illegitimate child. Cleveland assumed all responsibility for the child and this had an atrocious effect on the Mugwumps’ “morality excuse.” Mugwumps tried to argue that it was a different type of morality since it was a private issue rather than public, but failed. Blaine’s supporters mocked Cleveland by chanting “Ma, Ma where’s my Pa?” and it seemed all good for the republicans until a misstep committed while campaigning in New York City. Blaine overlooked something said by a supporter of his who had chanted that the Democrats where the party of “Rum [drunks], Romanism [Catholics], and Rebellion [Confederates].” This remark angered many Irish Americans, who were Catholics and stopped supporting Blaine because of this. Blaine (at just one week from the elections) had lost, and Cleveland became the 22nd president of the United

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