By the finish of this section, friend will:Compare the goals and also effects that the steady reform movement

Suggested Sequencing

Use this Decision suggest before the Wilsonian Progressivism Narrative to enable students to check out how Wilson became president and also the friction in between the politics parties during the beforehand twentieth century.

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The 1912 presidential election offered the nation not two but four candidates with contending visions because that addressing the nation’s cultivation problems. Each candidate had actually to decide whether to enter the race and also how to articulate a vision for a nation beset by rapid social and economic changes brought about by industrialization, urbanization, and also immigration. The candidates likewise had to current their idea of the appropriate government response. They had to consider America’s strategic and economic policies as a growing civilization power. Their completing visions readily available American voters an chance to select what they believed was the best path forward.

Former president Theodore Roosevelt climbed right into the open-air vehicle that would certainly take him to offer one that his last speeches at the tail finish of a long, grueling campaign. Although that had decreased to run for one more term in office in 1908, that was back now, four years later, seeking election to the most an effective office in the land.

As the car made its method to the Milwaukee Auditorium, a shot suddenly rang out. It was fired from a revolver simply a few feet away, and Roosevelt knew instantly he had been hit. Reaching into his coat, he felt the bullet hole in his side. However after coughing right into his hands several times and seeing no blood, he guessed the wound was no fatal. Return a medical professional told Roosevelt’s driver to take it him to the hospital, Roosevelt demanded to be taken to the auditorium to give his speech.

“I don’t understand whether you completely understand that I have actually just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose,” Roosevelt stated to the group upon his arrival. He pulled his decided from his coat pocket. The 50-page remarks had actually been pierced through a ragged bullet hole. Roosevelt said the crowd (accurately) that the folded decided “probably conserved me indigenous going into my heart. The cartridge is in me now, for this reason that i cannot do a very long speech, but I will try my best.”


Theodore Roosevelt (center) addresses the group at the 1912 progressive Party Convention.

Although the did not win the Republican nomination, Roosevelt had struck a blow versus the idea the parties must nominate their candidates, fairly than voters picking them v primaries. Together Hebert Croly, a journalist and also Roosevelt supporter, later on explained, “by popularizing the device of partisan government the state has thrust a sword into the vitals the its former master.” “The really crucial question,” that argued, “is even if it is progressivism. . . Will certainly not damage the two-party system itself, and also substitute for it a an ext satisfactory an approach of organizing bulk rule.” Indeed, Taft was backed through the facility of the Republican party, and Roosevelt ran because that the gradual Party, which was developed primarily for the purpose of advancing a solitary candidate in a solitary election.

With Taft largely out that the picture, Roosevelt can focus ~ above Wilson, the democratic nominee. And also the contest between them revealed the second major issue solved in 1912: what to do around the trusts. Trusts were large combinations of companies in related sectors that endangered to remove competition and establish monopolies over significant parts the the economy, native railroads to stole production. These combinations acted prefer monopolies once they conspired come manipulate prices, undercut their competitors to hit them out of the market, then raise prices as soon as competition was gone, to rise profits.

Woodrow Wilson, in a campaign he called the “New Freedom,” insisted top top the breakup the monopolies to restore competition. Over there was already a law on the books, the Sherman Antitrust Act, the forbade combine in restraint of trade, and Wilson wanted to force this law to reclaim competition and weaken corporate power. Theodore Roosevelt take it the opposite place in his “New Nationalism” campaign. He identified between great trusts and also bad trusts; in his view, not all trusts need to be broken up. Many of them, he argued, should be subjected to governmental manage rather than eliminated. A an effective administrative commission, he believed, could keep this trusts in place but make certain they worked for the great of the people. The new Nationalism referred to as for increased government control of the economy, vice versa, the new Freedom took a much more traditional approach, seeking to reclaim competition rather than relying on government control.

When voters checked out the polls on election day to choose their following president, Woodrow Wilson winner a resounding victory. That captured nearly 42 percent the the vote, and 435 of the nation’s 531 Electoral college votes. Roosevelt came in second, win 27 percent the the vote and 88 Electoral university votes. His project remains the most successful third-party bid for the presidency in American history. Taft finished v 23 percent that the vote, however only eight votes in the Electoral College. Debs received 6 percent of the vote however carried no states. (In a strange twisted of fate, Debs was later imprisoned by chairman Wilson during people War i for speak out against the war.)


“Dr. Sam: ‘He may Pull Through—With a lengthy Rest.’” This cartoon, by Hayes, was released in Harper’s Weekly, July 20, 1912.

Refer come the image provided.

1. This political cartoon was created in solution to

the Republican Party’s assistance of the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and also Fifteenth AmendmentsRepublican opposition to the contract of VersaillesDemocratic support for the women’s suffrage amendmenta split within the Republican party for the presidential nomination

2. The events portrayed in this cartoon most straight led to

new U.S. Ar acquisitions in the western Hemispherean end to federal government reforms expanding voter participationreforms strengthening business and financial regulationsAmerica’s energetic intervention in human being War I

3. A historian can use this image to assistance the contention that

agreement top top the goals and tactics that the progressive movement confirmed difficultthe autonomous Party provided more renowned progressive reforms than the Republicansthe windy saw small benefit from steady reforms prior to World battle IProgressive Era presidents exercised little leadership in setup reform agendas

Primary Sources

Croly, Herbert. Progressive Democracy. Brand-new York: Macmillan Co., 1914; thing 16.

Roosevelt, Theodore. “A Charter for Democracy.” Teaching American History.

Roosevelt, Theodore. “The brand-new Nationalism.” In 50 main point Documents: required Reading because that Students, Teachers, and also Citizens, edited through Christopher Burkett. Ashland, OH: Ashbrook Press, 2013:316–330.

Suggested Resources

Flehinger, Brett. The 1912 Election and also the strength of Progressivism: A Brief background with Documents. Boston: Bedford, 2002.

Gould, Lewis. Four Hats in the Ring: The 1912 Election and also the birth of modern-day American Politics. Lawrence, KS: University push of Kansas, 2008.

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Milkis, Sidney. Theodore Roosevelt, the gradual Party, and also the transformation of American Democracy. Lawrence, KS: University press of Kansas, 2009.