Presentation on theme: "MR. CALELLA AMERICAN STUDIES I HONORS Politics and Urbanization."— Presentation transcript:
MR. CALELLA AMERICAN STUDIES I HONORS Politics and Urbanization
Americanization The main goal of the Americanization movement was to ASSIMILATE people of various cultures in to the dominant culture What types of things must people do, say, eat, etc. to be “American”? What were the pros and cons of the Americanization movement?
Political Machines Political Machines: organized group that controlled political party in a city Usually political machines belonged to the Democratic Party Political machines were found in every major city during the late 1800s (New York, Boston, San Francisco, Chicago, etc.) A city’s political machine would help people or businesses in exchange for votes For example, a political machine would help an immigrant obtain his citizenship and a job, and in exchange, the immigrant would pledge his vote to the political machine
The Structure of a Political Machine City made up of wards and wards made up precincts (neighborhoods) CITY BOSS (typically the mayor of a city; head of the political machine) WARD BOSS (tried to get the electoral vote in his ward) PRECINCT WORKERS or CAPTAINS (tried to get voters’ support in a precinct or neighborhood)
City Boss Usually the mayor of the city Controlled who received city jobs and services Tried to solve urban problems to get voters’ support Helped immigrants with naturalization and finding jobs in exchange for votes Often associated with corrupt practices
Voter Fraud Instructing people to use false names or the names of people who died to place votes; or instructing one person to vote multiple times by using disguises Could also involve other forms of corruption such pay offs (shot of whisky or $1 in exchange for a vote) Political machines were notorious for voter fraud in order to sway election results in their favor 1960 Presidential Election: rumors involving Democratic Machine in Chicago winning election for JFK
Graft Graft: illegal use of political influence for personal gain For example, BRIBE (city political machine could help a business in exchange for cash) KICKBACK: another example of graft; city boss gives a business a city contract and allows the business to overcharge for services, the business then sends (or kickbacks) a portion of the overcharge back to the city boss
Tammany Hall It was a powerful Democratic political machine which ran New York City from late 1700s to early 1900s William M. Tweed was its boss (Boss Tweed) New York County Courthouse: construction contractor charged taxpayers $13 million, but it only cost $3 million to build; difference went to Tweed’s pockets Tweed caught and goes to prison, but escapes to Europe Caught in Spain thanks to a unflattering political cartoon!
Patronage and Civil Service Patronage: giving government jobs to people who helped get you elected Some called it the “lifeblood of politics” Review: President Jackson’s “Spoils System” What are the pros and cons of patronage? Civil Service: jobs in government administration (city, state or federal level) Reformers wanted to eliminate patronage and replace it with a MERIT-BASED SYSTEM
Rutherford B. Hayes and others Hayes: U.S. president from 1877-1881 (Compromise of 1877?) Could not convince Congress to adopt Civil Service reform However, he did clean up corruption in NYC’s Customs House James A. Garfield: assassinated by an insane man who did not get a government job (patronage); assassin believed that Arthur would hook him up Shot in back and dies 2 months later from wounds Chester A. Arthur: Garfield’s VP, becomes president and passes reform on patronage
Pendleton Civil Service Act of 1883 Passed in reaction to Garfield’s assassination and to limit patronage Imposed a merit-based system (People who wanted a federal job needed to pass an examination) By 1901, 40% of all federal jobs were civil service positions requiring the passing of an examination Today, police, fire, mail, etc. must pass test What type of questions do you believe are these examinations?