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Liberal And Conservative: The Trying Times Of A President

Liberal And Conservative: The Trying Times Of A President

Liberal and Conservative: The trying times of a President

The common definitions of Liberal and Conservative are usually applicable to most Presidencies. During the terms that President Hoover and Roosevelt were in Office, most people used these terms to describe them. However, if you look more in depth as to what went on while they were in Office, you will notice some interesting changes that might have you think otherwise.

President Herbert Hoover, elected in 1929 on the conservative ticket stated, “We in America today are nearer to the final triumph over poverty than ever before in the history of any land." This reinforced his Conservative believes, as he continued to criticize those of Liberals. “Liberalism should be found not striving to spread bureaucracy but striving to set bounds to it…” At the start of his term in office, he strongly dictated that “there shall be no domination by any group or combination in this republic, whether it be business or political… It demands economic justice as well as political and social justice.”

Within months, the stock market came crashing down, proving horrendous for the President’s stance. The Nation started to spiral downward, moving quicker and quicker into a depression. Immediately after the crash, President Hoover stated that he would do everything to keep the banks balanced, to keep people spending money. As new elements emerged, making the economic situation worse, the President seemed to be disheartened as to the outlook. He reiterated his views as stated before that, “people must not suffer from hunger or cold. Caring for them must be primarily a local and a voluntary responsibility.” He was attacked by many upon his new views; A scapegoat to some, to others, worse. He became defensive in Office, saying “I do not feel that I should be charged with lack of human symphony for those who suffer.”

Sliding into the Oval Office in 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt strove to return the faith to the American people they once had possessed. “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Within the first days of office he released a program entitled “The First 100 days” which were to recover business and agriculture, providing relief to the unemployed, and providing reform to some acts to further the protection of the people. Upon completion of this plan, the Nation had indeed achieved some recovery, but it was nowhere near the standards Roosevelt had hoped. He appended to the 100 days with more New Deal measures, ensuring to help protect the Nations people. Starting his campaign on the Liberal side of the spectrum, he continued to stay throughout the four terms he spent in office.

Although many believe the titles Liberal and Conservative are applied once to a person, staying with that person until their demise; this is the exact opposite of what happened. When President Hoover was elected in 1929, he voiced Conservative views. Becoming deeper into a depression, these views changed to more of a Liberal standpoint, to try to save the Nation in which he was the leader. President Roosevelt came into office later, already having those Liberal viewpoints, and felt no need to change. Therefore, initially, the characteristics could be applied to each President, but depending on the circumstances of the Nation, those viewpoints could change drastically as shown with President Hoover in the Great Depression.


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