Crisis Nixon 1
Nixon had won in 1968 by appealing to the silent majority he viewed as Middle AmericansNixon tried to reduce federal power and give power back to the state.New Federalism-giving money to the state’s so states could administer social programs.Nixon believed the Americans had tired of the big government of Lyndon Johnson.Yet Nixon actually expanded the federal government.He created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to make workplaces safer.
Crisis Nixon 2
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)-war on drugs.Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-set federal environmental standards.The Clean Air Act-allowed EPA to set air quality standards.He even supported the Family Assistance Plan (FAP) to give every American a guaranteed minimum income….it failed passage.Nixon experienced Stagflation-a recession with high unemployment and inflation at the same time, which had begun under LBJ.
Crisis Nixon 3
Stagflation was caused from many factors.Expanding federal budget deficits caused by the Vietnam War, heavy foreign competition, which in turn caused U.S. companies to reduce the workforce.OPEC-Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries: oil-rich Middle East and Latin American countries that exported oil to U.S.By the 1970’s, U.S. was importing more that half of its oil from OPEC.Middle East countries decided to embargo (stop selling) oil to allies of Israel, including U.S.
Crisis Nixon 4
This caused oil shortages in the U.S. as oil prices rose 400% causing long lines at gas stations and gas rationing.Nixon fought stagflation by imposing a 90 day freeze on wages and prices. This helped but in the end failed to end stagflation.In Nixon’s 1972 election, he sought to win greater support among blue-collar and white-collar workers in the South.Southern Strategy-he opposed busing which was very unpopular in the South, in which minority students were bused to white schools and white students were bused to minority schools to improve integration.
Crisis Nixon 5
Nixon enjoyed his highest approval ratings in 1972 and his Southern Strategy worked.He increased his popularity with his trips to China and Russia.Before the election in the summer of 1972, burglars broke into the Democratic HQ at the Watergate Hotel and Office complex.They were caught and one of them was a member of CREEP (Committee to Re-Elect the President).When confronted, Nixon denied any knowledge of the break-in.Two reporters, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, investigated and received tips from a secret informer in the Nixon White House known as Deep Throat.
Crisis Nixon 6
Nixon promised the American people he was “not a crook.”Congress investigated and learned Nixon recorded every conversation in the Oval Office.Congress demanded the recording tapes.Nixon refused citing Executive Privilege-A President can refuse to disclose information that could threaten national security.Nixon then appointed special prosecutors to investigate to make it appear he was cooperating and innocent.When the prosecutors requested the tapes Nixon refused and fired them all in the Saturday Night Massacre.
Crisis Nixon 7
Then his Vice-President, Spiro Agnew, was convicted of corruption and had to resign.Under the 25thAmendment (presidential succession) he appointed Gerald Ford VP.Congress then went to the Supreme Court to order Nixon to hand over the tapes.Nixon then released the tapes which showed he knew and supported the Watergate break-in and suppressed information, obstructed justice, and lied to the American people.Protests called for his impeachment and Congress prepared impeachment proceedings.Nixon then resigned rather than be impeached and Gerald Ford became President.
Crisis Nixon 8
Watergate showed that the system of Checks and Balances worked in government, but it caused the American people to lose trust in their government.Ford was a Congressman and former member of the Warren Commission.Ford continued the Détente policy of Nixon with Russia and rescued Americans held hostage on the boatMayaquezin Southeast Asia.Helsinki Accords-European agreement on human rightsHe tried a voluntary effort to reduce inflation called Whip Inflation Now (WIN) but it failed.He granted Nixon a pardon for all crimes he may, or may not, have committed.
Crisis Ford 9
This caused opposition and protests at the time but today most Americans agree it was the correct thing to do.Americans wanted an honest leader, one who was not part of Washington D.C. politics.They supported democratic Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter, a devout Christian and an outsider to Washington politics.He appealed to Americans as a “citizen president.”Without connections in Congress, most of Carter’s bills failed with only some support among his fellow Democrats.He continued to struggle with the energy crisis and stagflation. Asking Americans to conserve fuel. Gas had risen from 40 cents to $1.20 a gallon.
Crisis Carter 10
Interest rates rose to 18-21% as Paul Volcker of the Federal Reserve tried to tame inflation and unemployment was the highest since the Great Depression.He granted amnesty (political pardon) to Vietnam War draft dodgers which was very unpopular with Americans.The Sunbelt gained more political influence as demographics changes.Americans were moving south and west while immigration from Latin America and Asia.
Crisis Carter 11
The lifestyle changes of the Counterculture became more popular in the 1970’s with the “Me Generation.” Casual clothes, pre-marital sex, drug use, and higher divorce rates as people focused on themselves.There was also growing interests in Transcendental Meditation (TM) and fitness/health. Body building grew more popular with Arnold Schwarzenegger.In opposition to some of these changes, there was a resurgence of fundamental Christianity, with 20% of Americans claiming fundamentalism.
Crisis Carter 12
TV evangelists, televangelists, reached 1.5 million with 280 radio stations andtvstations.Pat Robertson and JerryFalwellwith his Moral Majority became increasingly popular.Religious conservatives began alliance with political conservative to forge a new political majority by 1980.TV shows focused on nostalgia like Happy Days, but also hot topic issues as with All In The Family.Boat People-refugees on makeshift boats trying to escape Vietnam for other Southeast Asia countries. Many ended up in the U.S. and Canada.Carter continued the policy of détente and agreed to SALT II with Brezhnev of Russia.
Crisis Carter 13
Then Russia invaded Afghanistan and Carter withdrew from SALT II, placed sanctions on Russia including suspension of grain sales, and boycotted the 1980 Olympic games in Moscow.Carter promoted human rights in the developing world and found himself dealing with dictators.In Nicaragua, dictator Somoza was so oppressive that Carter had to stop support of him.Carter also approved giving the Panama Canal to Panama by 1999.Carter’s successful foreign policy was the Camp David Accords-Egypt and Israel signed peace treaties and Egypt formally recognized Israel.Egypt was the first Middle East country to recognize Israel. Their President, Anwar Sadat, was later assassinated.
Crisis Carter 14
Also under Carter, the Mariel Boatlift developed in which Cuba put their criminal and political prisoners on small boats and set them off toward U.S. shores.The foreign policy disaster was the Iran Hostage Crisis.The pro-American leader of Iran, the Shah, was overthrown by radicalmuslimsunder the Ayatollah Khomeini.The Shah fled the country and came to the U.S. for medical treatment.Iranians stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, Iran, and held hostage 66 Americans, threatening to kill them virtually each day.
Crisis Carter 15
Carter tried to negotiate their release over months but failed.He then tried a military rescue which failed and resulted in several military deaths.The hostages were held for over a year as Americans grew frustrated over Carter’s failures.During the 1980 presidential election, Republican Ronald Reagan had promised to get the hostages and go after their captors.
Crisis Carter 16
With a terrible economy, disastrous foreign policy, and what appeared to be a weak America, Reagan revitalized the public.Just after Reagan took the oath of office after winning the election of 1980, the hostages were released.The U.S. then lifted the freeze on $8 billion of Iranian assets in the U.S.The hostage crisis showed that the Soviet Union was no longer the only threat to American.Even today, Iran has a hostile relation with the U.S. The only country to have a Death ToAmerica Day.