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Why did Roosevelt win the 1932 elections

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  • Pages: 5
  • Word count: 1067
  • Category: Election

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The 1932 elections were held during the great depression. This was an excellent opportunity for any competitor to become a candidate and compete with Hoover. The public believed ‘a monkey or a chinaman’ could’ve beaten Hoover. Amongst many Roosevelt stood as a competitor against Hoover and Roosevelt believed in using the government to help the country. This was one of many reasons as to why Roosevelt won the elections in 1932. Due to the current events Hoover was seen to be uncaring and he was very unpopular with the public because of the way he combated the depression.

In contrast to Roosevelt who was conversational and clearly promised a change for the future, this was a key skill as to why Roosevelt won the elections. The economic effects of the depression were very unpleasant and terrible affecting the prices of shares and stocks which fell rapidly, consequently marketers wanted to sell everything they had before prices dropped further. This resulted in thousands of banks becoming bankrupt, which meant the unemployment rate rose rapidly, to an extent that by 1932 a quarter of the population had become unemployed.

Due to this increase in unemployment in America, the rest of the world too suffered, as international trade destructed. There was hardly anyone buying goods, and so the government wanted the country to only buy goods produced by them, so they would profit. In order to stop the public buying goods from abroad, they increased the prices of traded goods by tax. Along with the destruction of international trade, businesses too collapsed as they relied a lot on raising money by selling goods or borrowing, which was becoming difficult. The great depression was simply chaos.

The public expected the government to help with welfare and financially, above all, look for a resolution to the depression. However when the government wasn’t able to provide anything the people resorted to violence. Many farmers destroyed crops to raise prices, as well as destroying their own crops; they also destroyed others, and prevented crops from reaching markets through blockages. Furthermore, the situation had come to a point where the public even battled the police and threats to the judges also started taking place. The bonus army consisted of 10,000 marchers, who were formerly soldiers in the First World War.

These ex-soldiers were promised pension to be received in 1945. However during the Depression they were becoming financially stuck and so wanted the promised payment now, in a time of need. However the government found it impossible to deliver this payment, as they too were short on money. As an objection to this, the former soldiers reacted by doing a march at Washington DC, and so were called the bonus marchers. The government on the other hand decided that they would not accept such behaviour, which resulted extremely violently by driving away the marchers by its army equipped with guns, tear gas and bombs.

This event reduced the chances of the Republican Party getting elected because the public thought that by driving away the bonus army so violently, the chances of the Republican Party helping the citizens were at lowest amount. Herbert Hoover believed that everyone should be strong and able to stand on their own two feet. Many politicians supported this. Also Hoover believed that the government should not interfere with the depression and where money was concerned it was said to be taken from charity.

Furthermore he kept telling the people that the great depression is soon finishing and that ‘prosperity is just around the corner. Hoover didn’t take any actions at first and when he did the public said it was ‘too little, too late. ‘ Although every candidate made promises, Roosevelt’s promise was straight to the point. He knew that he has to get the citizens of America out of the depression using the government. This was an advantage for Roosevelt as his opponent Herbert Hoover believed in ‘laissez faire’ which meant that he doesn’t have to do anything himself as the situation will resolve on its own. Another promise made by Roosevelt was simply ‘hope’ and a change for the future.

Roosevelt has a lot of psychical experiences which is possibly is the reason as to why Roosevelt became president. He became senator in 1910 and after that he gave 4 years contribution to the Great War from 1914 to 1918. He also had an important post in the government, helping run the American navy. In 1920 Roosevelt stood for vice president, despite the fact that he lost, he created a name for himself, to have a political future ahead of him. Another experience which made the public vote for Roosevelt was his previous success in helping New York’s unemployed; he spent $20million tax money on assisting the unemployed.

If he could help one state that means he could help the country using the aid of government. Moreover he was the first governor in any state to use tax money in that way as he was the governor of New York. In 1921, sadly Roosevelt was infected with a disease called polio, which was an infectious disease that destroyed the motor neurons resulting with a consequent paralysis. For the next five years he fought against paralysis and he gradually progressed into a walk with the support of crotches. ‘I spent two years in bed trying to move my big toe. When he recovered he entered politics again. The will to recover was an inspiration to the Americans and impressed them.

Moreover the analogy to his disease was the great depression, the public believed if Roosevelt could fight his way through paralysis then he could help America get out of the great depression. Most of the citizen of America voted for him due to his commitment and bravery in overcoming his paralysis and others for voted sympathetically, as they felt sorry for Roosevelt. Herbert Hoover’s popularity dramatically dropped due to the depression.

Most of the Americans blamed him for the unpleasant experience which was an advantage for Roosevelt. The public saw Hoover to be incredibly uncaring and incompetent due to his violent acts and driving away the bonus army. The actions taken to deal with the depression by Hoover was ‘too little, too late. ‘ On the other hand Roosevelt was charismatic and also known to have a bit of a laugh and conversational. This was a political approach to the public as well as a very effective style to campaign.

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