The New Conservative Coalition The NEW RIGHT The NEW RIGHT - a political coalition of: –Conservative evangelical Christians – Moral Majority founded by Rev. Jerry Falwell - Baptist minister (founder - Liberty University - Lynchburg, VA) To restore Christian Values in America –Southern Democrats –Sunbelt states –Reduction of Social Programs –Called for reduction in size and scope of government –Reagan Democrats –Favored return of US military prominence –Patriotic focus
The 1980 Revolution Nixon Victories in 1968 and 1972 early indicators of change Carters series of Unfortunate Events Carters perceived mishandling of major challenges Reagans ability to communicate - The Great Communicator Few simple well- articulated idea
The Reagan Revolution and the First Inaugural Address In the days ahead I will propose removing the roadblocks that have slowed our economy and reduced productivity. Steps will be taken aimed at restoring the balance between various levels of government. Progress may be slow, measured in inches and feet, not miles, but we will progress. It is time to reawaken this industrial giant, to get government back within its means, and to lighten our punitive tax burden. And these will be our first priorities, and on these principles there will be no compromise. - Ronald Reagan 1981
Supply-Side Economics a.k.a Reaganomics Cut taxes to put more money into the hands of businesses Cut taxes on the wealthiest Americans Lower taxes = more investment in the supply side of the economy Would: –promote and create new jobs –encourage capital investment, and –lead to stimulated industrial growth
Cutting Government Regulation - deregulation Continued Carters programs to deregulate key industries Energy, Transportation and Banking Industries Challenged Air Traffic Controllers in 1981 - Fired those who refused to go back to work after a strike.
Slowed Federal Growth - New Federalism (Reagan-style) Limiting government –Eliminated public service jobs, –reduced unemployment compensation, –lowered welfare benefits, –raised fees for Medicare patients Federal domestic spending still grew for a couple of years
Reagan and Military Buildup Peace through Strength Sharp increase in military spending = buildup New weapons and new technology Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) = better known as Star Wars INF Treaty (1988) - agreement to eliminate intermediate-range nuclear forces
Reagan and the Cold War Called Soviet Union the evil empire –Mr. Gorbachev, tear down that wall Reagan - Cold Warrior –Lebanon –Libya –Grenada –El Salvador –Nicaragua (Contra rebels supported by US)
Reagan: Economic Recession, and Recovery 1981-1982 Recession Inflation slowed, consumer spending increased Stock market grew Federal deficit grew even as domestic spending decreased National debt = $909 billion in 1980 --- $3.2 trillion in 1990
Patriotic Renewal Its Morning in America, Again 59% of popular vote Second largest electoral victory in history 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles Communist-bloc countries boycotted 1986 - 100th anniversary of Statue of Liberty 1987 - 200th anniversary of the Constitution
Other issues 1984-1988 AIDS Awareness Womens Movement stalled (ERA failed in 1982) Supreme Court conservatives –Sandra Day OConnor –Anthony Kennedy –Antonin Scalia –Chief Justice William Rehnquist
More issues: 1984-1988 Farm Crisis - foreclosures Manufacturing shift - from metal and textiles (overseas = outsourcing due to labor costs) Service sectors continued to grow Wealthiest Americans flourished in the 1980s Jan 28, 1986 - Space Shuttle Challenger exploded shortly after take off
Scandals S & L Crisis Savings and Loan institutions deregulated and some corrupt individuals used this to make huge personal fortunes S & Ls collapsed in late 1980s $2.6 billion in savings lost Iran Contra Scandal Selling arms (to Iran) for the release of hostages to support Nicaraguan Contras Covered up Reagan admitted covering up No long term impact Teflon president.