Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

From Watergate to the “New Conservatism”. June 17, 1972, James McCord and 4 others from the “Committee to Re-Elect the President [Nixon]” (CREEP) were.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "From Watergate to the “New Conservatism”. June 17, 1972, James McCord and 4 others from the “Committee to Re-Elect the President [Nixon]” (CREEP) were."— Presentation transcript:

1 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism”

2 June 17, 1972, James McCord and 4 others from the “Committee to Re-Elect the President [Nixon]” (CREEP) were found to have broken into the Democrat National Committee HQ at the Watergate Office Building in Washington DC. Purpose: examine DNC files and install wiretaps

3 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” June 22, 1972: President Nixon disavowed any knowledge of this group of burglars McCord was tried for burglary in 1973 before Judge John Sirica McCord advised Judge Sirica that RNC officials and White House officials had known about the break-in, had ordered it, and had committed perjury at the McCord trial

4 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Jeb S. Magruder, head of CREEP, and the president’s personal attorney, John Dean, came forward and admitted involvement. Dean testified before a Senate investigating committee that President Nixon had known, ordered the break-in, and had subsequently ordered a cover- up

5 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” According to Dean’s testimony, the cover-up had included payoffs to participants to get them to remain silent (“hush money”) John Ehrlichman, Nixon’s Chief of Staff, fired Dean. Soon after, Ehrlichman, Nixon aide Bob Haldeman, and Attorney Richard Kleindeinst all resigned after being indicted for perjury

6 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Nixon agreed to appoint an independent investigation of the matter, though he preferred that the White House do its own investigation. Professor Archibald Cox of Harvard Law School appointed special prosecutor Cox, as an independent prosecutor, had subpoena power.

7 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” White House Aide Patrick Butterfield testified that Nixon had made audiotapes of all Oval Office conversations. Cox subpoenaed all tapes that may have existed. Nixon refused, citing national security and “executive privilege.”

8 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Nixon appealed the subpoena to a district federal court, which refused to quash it Nixon then ordered his new Attorney General, Elliot Richardson, to fire Cox Richardson refused, then resigned rather than be fired. William Ruckelshaus, the Assistant AG, also refused to fire Cox. Ruckelshaus resigned also rather than be fired.

9 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” The 2 nd Assistant AG, Robert Bork, agreed to fire Cox. All of these firings/resignations took place on October 20, 1973 Collectively known as the “Saturday Night Massacre” (Bork was nominated to the Supreme Court by President Reagan in 1987, but the Senate refused to confirm him)

10 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” When news of the “massacre” became public, the House (with a Democrat majority) began to consider “articles of impeachment” in the House Judiciary Committee. Nixon grudgingly appointed Leon Jaworski to replace Cox as special prosecutor

11 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Ordered to do so by the prosecutor, Nixon handed over some of the audiotapes. But upon examination it became apparent that the set of tapes was incomplete and that several had long periods of erasures.

12 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Meanwhile, in a totally unrelated matter, Nixon’s Vice President Spiro Agnew pleaded “no contest” to charges of tax fraud and bribe-taking dating back to his time as Governor of Maryland. Agnew abruptly resigned as Vice- President in October 1973.

13 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Under the new 25 th Amendment, Nixon appointed Michigan House Member Gerald R. Ford to be the new Vice President.

14 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Adding to Nixon’s mounting troubles was the revelation that he had paid no income tax at all during his presidency, and had used public money to repair his private estate in California. The IRS penalized him over $500,000 Interestingly, Nixon had often gotten the IRS to audit the tax returns of his political enemies to make trouble for them.

15 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” In spring 1974, under Jaworski’s supervision, a federal grand jury indicted all previously-known Watergate figures, plus Nixon’s one-time Attorney General John Mitchell, for obstruction of Justice. Nixon was named in the indictment but not indicted (he was an “un-indicted co- conspirator” according to the indictment)

16 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Congressmen and the general public began to call for Nixon to resign, but he refused. Jaworski subpoenaed the missing tapes; Nixon refused to turn them over. He was eventually ordered to by the Supreme Court. (US v. Nixon, 1974) The House Judiciary Committee began to debate impeachment.

17 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” In August 1974 the House Judiciary Committee recommended impeachment on three charges: obstructing justice, misuse of presidential power, and failing to obey a duly-issued subpoena. On August 5, Nixon released one audiotape on which he was clearly heard to order that the FBI not investigate Watergate.

18 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” On August 8, Nixon resigned. Vice-President Gerald Ford ascended to the Presidency Gerald Ford thus became the only president in US history never to have been elected by the entire country.

19 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Within days, Ford used his new executive authority to pardon Nixon completely for “any crimes he may have committed while in office.” Many were outraged, but Ford stated the country would not be served by a Nixon trial, since he had already left office.

20 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Congress acted quickly to prevent any future LBJ-like or Nixon-like abuses of authority: It passed “War Powers Act” to prevent presidents from making war without Congress It required the federal government to respond quickly to a subpoena It limited use of the “national security” excuse for withholding information from the public

21 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Other problems for Ford: OPEC (the Organization of Petroleum and Exporting Countries, primarily Arab nations in the mid-east) were angered by US support of Israel during an ongoing war with Egypt. In 1974, OPEC embargoed all oil sales to the US.

22 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Gas shortages began almost overnight, and gas prices skyrocketed. Overall price hikes were an immediate by-product, and rippled out into all segments of the economy. Inflation was suddenly into “double digits.” Ford began the “Whip Inflation Now” (WIN) program, ordering wage and price freezes just as Nixon had done.

23 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Similar to the old New Deals of the “NRA Eagle – We Do Our Part” stickers, Ford encouraged Americans to take part in the program by wearing “WIN” buttons. The country slid into recession. Ford proposed an income tax cut, and a decrease in all social spending.

24 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” When Congress refused to appropriate any further funds to support the South Vietnamese, Ford ordered an expedited pull-out of all US troops there. Saigon fell to the communist North Vietnamese in April 1975 Re-named Ho Chi Minh City

25 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” California Governor Ronald Reagan challenged Ford for the Republican nomination in 1976, an unheard-of show of party disunity that sought to capitalize on Ford’s unpopularity Ford narrowly secured the nomination to run again. Ford lost to newcomer Jimmy Carter, former Governor of Georgia.

26 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” The assumption was that the Republican Party suffered from the “splash back effect,” the scandals of Watergate giving the nation a bad impression of Republicans in general. Voter turnout for the 1976 election was among the lowest in history (less than 40% of the country’s eligible voters)

27 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Carter was respected as an “outsider,” a man with integrity and very few Washington connections. Both of these facts made it difficult for him to govern. Washington friendships can be useful for a president. Carter’s programs were theoretically complicated, and he was unable to push legislation to support their many aspects

28 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” The OPEC oil embargoes caused prices in all areas of consumer spending to rise. Inflation was high throughout the Carter presidency. The Federal Reserve under Chairman Paul Volcker (a Carter appointee) raised interest rates to combat inflation Home loans were over 20% at one point, credit card rates closing in on 30%

29 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” This “tight money” policy made it hard for businesses to borrow money. It also made the cost of home loans rise, making houses less affordable Home sales stalled and many companies were forced to lay off workers By 1980: unemployment was nearly 8%, home loans nearly 20%, and annual inflation was over 12%

30 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Carter landmarks: A foreign policy based on human rights considerations (considered too “touchy- feely” for his critics) Ordered a boycott of the 1980 Moscow Olympics because of the Russian invasion of Afghanistan. Infuriated US athletes and fans

31 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Offered full amnesty to Viet Nam-era young men who had fled to Canada or Sweden to avoid the draft. Veterans groups called the action unpatriotic. Established new Department of Energy, created tax “superfund” to clean up chemical and oil waste dumps

32 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Negotiated controversial turnover of control of Panama Canal to the government of Panama by 1999 (as guaranteed by the original treaty negotiated by President Theodore Roosevelt) Granted “official recognition” to mainland China rather than Taiwan, 1979

33 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Signed a second Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (“SALT II”) negotiating mutual limits on bombers, missiles, etc. for USA and USSR. Senate stalled this treaty and refused to debate it. Never ratified

34 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Biggest Carter success: 1978 “Camp David Accords” between Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat. First peace negotiations in peace between the two countries Israel and Egypt never again at war, though Palestinian question still not solved

35 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Biggest Carter debacle: Handling of “Iran hostage crisis” 1978 revolution in Iran brought radical Islamic leader Ayatollah Khomeini to power. Deposed Iranian leader Shah Reza Pahlavi allowed into exile in US for medical treatment

36 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” US had supported Pahlavi through 15+ years of harsh rein; Khomeini described USA as “Great Satan” for this support 1978 Muslim radicals stormed US embassy in Teheran, Iran and took all employees hostage (52 total) Carter refused to negotiate; began embargo of trade with Iran

37 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Ordered an attempted military rescue that failed, killing 8 Marines. Hostages held until January 1981 (government negotiated release after Carter lost 1980 election) 444 days total USA looked weak, inept, and President Carter looked stubborn and unyielding.

38 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Hostage issue, plus high inflation and high gas prices, lost 1980 election for Carter. Former California Governor Ronald Reagan won easily, sweeping a GOP majority along with him. Reagan’s sales pitch: “Are you really better off now than you were four years ago?”

39 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan preached a “new conservatism.” Emphasis on “family values,” hard work, religion, patriotism, military strength, etc. New “trickle-down” economic theory: of government supports big business and big investors, benefits such as better jobs will eventually “trickle down” to all levels of society

40 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Critics called this theory “Reaganomics” Reagan called it “supply-side economics” – help the “supplying side” [the business side] of the buying-selling equation, and everybody will benefit Reagan won the election of 1980 easily (and was able to announce the release of the Teheran hostages on his inauguration day)

41 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” First Reagan initiative: 25% income tax cut for all citizens, over 3 years. Highest dollar benefit to the wealthiest but same % for all. Reduced capital gains taxes, inheritance taxes, etc. – all benefits to the wealthiest taxpayers Established IRAs for all citizens

42 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” To balance budget in accord with the 1981 Budget Reconciliation Act, slashed nearly $40 billion from social programs Increased military spending by $12 billion (helpful according to Reagan in terms of both national security and employment, since defense industries were big employers)

43 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan promoted an expensive defense program, the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI, nicknamed “Star Wars”) Concept: destroy enemy missiles en route to USA, using space stations armed with nuclear warheads. SDI complicated and expensive; theorized, but never implemented by Congress

44 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Expensive defense programs raised level of federal budget deficit; by 1982, Reagan administration was forced to scale back some tax cuts. By 1984, raised taxes to help pay down the deficit Hurt his approval ratings to a modest degree

45 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan survived an assassination attempt in 1981, which actually increased his popularity Scaled back anti-trust suits against corporate giants IBM and AT&T; overall, Reagan ran a pro-corporation administration

46 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Appointed Sandra Day O’Connor to Supreme Court; first woman to serve on the high court Overall, Reagan opposed to affirmative action and voting rights legislation, claiming that the need for both was over

47 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan’s second term victory over Democrat Walter Mondale (who ran a spirited campaign with the first female VP nominee, Geraldine Ferraro) showed the popularity of Reagan as a person, and the strength of GOP coalition building among the “moral majority”, traditionalists, and corporate groups

48 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan won the presidency with support from 60% of voters; strong mandate for second term. GOP lost slightly in Congress.

49 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan ordered 1986 retaliatory strike against Libya, as a response to apparent Libyan involvement in terrorist activities against US ships and civilians. Began long-simmering feud between Reagan and Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi

50 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan established a nearly-warm relationship between USA and USSR when Mikhail Gorbachev became USSR premier in Reagan’s posture: always be willing to negotiate, but do so from a posture of strength; despite the “thaw” in relations, he continued to press for increased military spending

51 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” 1987 Reagan-Gorbachev agreement eliminated medium range nuclear missiles from the continent of Europe Soviet Union was nearing bankruptcy, Gorbachev frantic to hold the country together. Military intelligence in US knew this, urged Reagan to continue military spending so USSR could not keep up

52 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” This tactic eventually caused the Gorbachev government to fall, allowing Reagan to earn a reputation as “the man who ended communism in Europe.” Economic costs to both countries were high; USA scored record-breaking deficits in the process

53 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan a staunch anti-communist. Very concerned about socialist rebellion in Nicaragua, where Sandinista rebels had overthrown a military dictatorship once supported by the US. Anti-socialist groups who called themselves the “Contras” were trying to unseat the new socialist leaders.

54 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan wanted to aid the Contra movement, but Congress refused. Some time in 1985, Reagan apparently OK’d a CIA secret, unrecorded sale of weapons to Iran and Iraq, using the cash proceeds as a “slush fund” to send secret assistance to the Contras. Became known as the “Iran-Contra affair”

55 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan administration’s standpoint: within president’s prerogative as Commander in Chief; totally in keeping with traditional US anti-communist posture. One of the military officers involved, Col. Oliver North, testified before Congress that he was proud to have done it, and would do it again.

56 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Congress was outraged that the president could conduct a military spending activity that bypassed their constitutional role in appropriation of funds. The investigation died in 1987 when the Contras and Sandinistas agreed on a cease-fire and the civil war ended

57 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan was called to testify under oath during the investigation; it was apparent to some observers that he was having great trouble remembering details, even remembering the questions he was asked. Possible that the Alzheimer disease which eventually claimed his life began during this time.

58 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan urged, and Congress passed, a new tax cut law in 1986 (while military spending continued.) However, the basic premise of Reaganomics seemed to be working: unemployment declined, and the stock marked boomed through most of the 1980s

59 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” The federal deficit was nearly $200 billion by the 1986 mid-term elections Consumer credit card debt rose by $200 billion during the Reagan presidency American cultural and social emphasis no longer on “helping the under- privileged.” The new emphasis was on affluent lifestyle.

60 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Hollywood skewered this lifestyle in a 1980s film Wall Street, in which central character Gordon Gekko proclaims “greed is good.” A stock market slide in October 1987 sent stocks crashing 500 points, and prompting another tax cut. The market rebounded within a year.

61 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reagan continued to appoint conservative justices to the Supreme Court, completely re-shaping it from the liberal 1960s court headed by Earl Warren. Reagan appointed some of the most conservative justices in history: William Rehnquist, O’Connor, Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia

62 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” 1988 election: GOP nominated Reagan’s Vice President, George Bush Sr.; Democrats nominated relative unknown Maryland Governor Michael Dukakis Bush easily defeated Dukakis, but the GOP win did not extend to Congress; still a largely divided government

63 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism”

64 Bush had run on a pledge to continue Reaganomics (which he had once derided as “voodoo economics”) and not to raise taxes. But he found that to seriously affect the huge deficits, a tax increase was necessary. Many voters felt he had lied to (or at least misled) them

65 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” The banking industry was in crisis (especially Savings and Loan institutions, which primarily make real estate loans with investors’ savings accounts.) Many had come close to failing during the stock crisis of Bush proposed a government bail-out of the entire industry with $170 billion in government funds

66 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Bush’s own brother, a S&L president in Texas, benefited from this government program, as did many other S&Ls in the country. The federal deficit continued to grow; the S&L “bail-out” also set a precedent of using tax funds to help out ailing industries

67 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” The early 1990s also saw Wall Street scandals involving “insider trading” in several well-known brokerage firms. Between 1989 and 1990, 46 brokerage houses on Wall Street were cited for fraud and illegal use of privileged information to benefit a few individuals.

68 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” A major ecological crisis occurred in 1989 when the tanker Exxon Valdez had a major oil spill off the coast of Alaska. Environmentalists accused Bush of trashing the planet to benefit corporations. The Justice Department prosecuted the accident vigorously and found Exxon at fault, fined over $1 million in the accident.

69 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism”

70 Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990, mandating handicapped parking spaces, curb cuts, elevators for wheelchair users, lowered water fountains, classroom adjustments, etc.

71 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Bush sent US troops to assist in a Panamanian coup against dictator Manuel Noriega in Noriega surrendered in early 1990

72 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Bush continued to attempt full normalization of trade relations with China, in the face of known human rights violations.

73 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Bush promoted a “compassionate conservatism” in response to critics who called him insensitive on human rights and civil rights matters. His “Thousand Points of Light” program insisted that volunteerism, not government programs, were the best way to solve social problems in America

74 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Bush continued negotiations with Gorbachev and expanded attempts to bring Russia to a free market rather than communist economy. Began talks on re-union of East and West Germany Concluded Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) reducing weapons 30%

75 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Began economic assistance to USSR as a means of opening dialog further between the two ideologies of communism and capitalism New era of “glasnost” – openness between former enemies

76 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Gulf War I: Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein massed troops on border with Kuwait, a longtime ally and oil trading partner of USA. Threatened to annex Kuwait Kuwaiti government appealed to USA for assistance

77 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” August 1990, when Iraqi invasion began, Bush ordered 130,000 US troops to defend Kuwait and guarantee world oil supply Iraq refused US ultimatum to remove troops from Kuwait; January 1991 deadline passed, and Bush ordered outright military action against Iraq.

78 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Consisted of bombing raids, no invasion by tanks and foot soldiers “Operation Desert Storm,” led by General Norman Schwarzkopf, featured high-tech US weapons

79 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Kuwait was free of Iraqi troops in February 1991 and Bush ordered the action ended. No plans to invade Iraq and oust Hussein

80 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Iraq agreed to accept UN sanctions (refusal to trade in Iraqi oil chief among them) Bush claimed victory, but many felt an invasion of Iraq would have stopped any future aggression Hussein planned, and would have further secured an oil supply for the US. Bush stood his ground.

81 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” 1990, Soviet satellite nation Lithuania declared its independence of the USSR. USSR unable to stop the secession; apparent that USSR was finally breaking up Arms reductions talks escalated, as both sides acknowledged the decline of threat posed by the former super-power

82 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Raised the problem of new “rogue states,” no longer under the control of the USSR but in physical possession of USSR’s old nuclear weapons

83 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Bush thus got to preside over the “death of communism and the Cold War,” but it was not enough to secure an electoral victory in 1992.

84 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton campaigned successfully

85 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Clinton was helped by a strong conservative 3 rd party challenger, billionaire H. Ross Perot

86 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Clinton’s Republican opponent, Senator Bob Dole, ran an ineffective campaign

87 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Clinton’s plans: Universal health care Full rights for minorities, including for the first time gay Americans Balanced budget, decrease in military spending All were controversial, all handled badly by Clinton

88 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Clinton appointed Janet Reno as the first female Attorney General

89 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Reno supervised the incident at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas April 19, 1993

90 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” 1994 mid-term elections signaled Americans’ distaste for these reforms, which many felt were pushed too heavily and too quickly Republicans swept control of both houses in New House Speaker Newt Gingrich presented “Contract with America,” promising a new conservative agenda.

91 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Newt Gingrich Common Newt

92 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” This “contract” was a useful Republican campaign tool, and re-stated many Reaganesque principles. It formed the basis of the “neo- conservative” movement. Congress continued to fight the “liberal excesses” of the Clinton administration.

93 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Murrah Federal Building Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Destroyed by a massive bomb on April 19, 1995 The second anniversary of the Waco seige

94 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Timothy McVeigh found to be responsible Tried and convicted on all 11 counts Conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction Use of a weapon of mass destruction Destruction by explosives Eight counts of first- degree murder Executed June 11, 2001

95 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Clinton successes: Family Leave Act, allowing fathers and mothers to provide unpaid leave for workers with family emergencies NAFTA – the North American Free Trade Agreement, removing protective tariffs against Canada and Mexico

96 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Budget deficit reduction Largely as a “peace benefit” due to the decline of communist threat Military spending decreased

97 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Arranged a new peace agreement between Israeli Prime Minister Itzhak Rabin and PLO chairman Yassir Arafat.

98 From Watergate to the “New Conservatism” Conservatives, agitated by the far- reaching government programs proposed by Clinton, pointed out many questionable factors in his life Whitewater real estate deal in Little Rock Arkansas, rumors of serial marital infidelities Clinton continued to deal with divided government and an activist conservative Congress through his second term.


Download ppt "From Watergate to the “New Conservatism”. June 17, 1972, James McCord and 4 others from the “Committee to Re-Elect the President [Nixon]” (CREEP) were."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google