POLITICAL CRISIS

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  • POLITICAL CRISIS 1973-1980
    • WATERGATE
      • resulted in limited political powers
        • 1975 Hughes Ryan amendment to the Privacy Act of 1974
          • president must inform congress of all undercover operations
        • 1973 War Powers Act
          • limited power of US presidents to use military force abroad
          • result of Nixon's military use in South Asia
        • Ethics in Government Act 1978
          • required all senior officials to disclose finances
            • created Office of Gov. Ethics
      • social consequence
        • lack of trust from the public in the gov.
          • Ford and Carter had to be open and truthful with their policies
        • Nixon's reputation was in tatters
          • lost support and people opposed him
    • ENVIRON-MENTALISM
      • Key concern in elections, especially for young
        • influenced by 'silent spring' Rachel Carson 1963
      • environmental acts passed
        • Clean Air Act 1970
        • Endangered Species Act 1973
        • Toxic Substance Control Act 1976
      • environment agencies set up
        • EPA environmental protection agency
        • OSHA 1970
      • Carter years (1977-1981) major issues
        • 1978 Love Canal filled with foul smelling industrial waste
          • residents suffered chromosomal damage
            • NY state spent $30 million to clean up canal
        • 1979 nuclear accident at 3 mile island Pennsylvania
          • nuclear reactor exploded, 10,000 fled
            • no new power stations built
        • plan to build Tellico Damn on Little Tennessee River
          • using ES act managed to oppose buidling
            • however built in 1978 after E and W DA act.
      • had some victories e.g.
        • helped force Alaska Lands Law
          • doubled acreage of land for national parks
        • wildlife refuges were extended
          • e.g. Elk Wildlife Refuge Wyoming
        • superfund created
          • $1 billion spent clearing up toxic sites
    • ECONOMY
      • FORD
        • inherited rising inflation + unemployed
          • unemploy rose to 11%
          • economic recession 1974-1975
        • set up WIP as a voluntary restraint
          • not compulsory
        • cut federal spending to curb rising prices
          • however not a big enough response
      • CARTER
        • results of OPEC oil crisis
          • promoted alternative energy sources
            • us fuel consumption fell 10% 1979-1983
          • comprehensive energy programme NEP
            • not introduced till 1978
          • department of energy
            • speed limits to reduce fuel consumption
        • little to control inflation
          • increased 6% 1977 to 10% 1978
        • unable to control stagflation
          • initial drop in unemployment from 8-7% in 1977
            • then rose, 10% in 1978
          • interest rates 20%
          • inflation 12-13%
    • FOREIGN AFFAIRS
      • FORD
        • face the embarrassment of losing the vietnam war
      • CARTER
        • Iranian crisis November 1979 - 66 hostages, 444 day crisis
          • April 1980 military mission to free hostages ended in disaster
            • military planes crashed in desert
              • images shown on TV
              • US Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance resigned
        • 1979 USSR invasion of Afghanistan
          • detrioration in Cold War - US boycotted 1980 Moscow Olympics
    • POPULARITY
      • FORD
        • gave Nixon a full pardon for all crimes
          • September 8th 1974
        • low voter turn out
          • 1950's/60's turn out of 60% byt in 1976 54%
          • congressional election 1978 38%
          • dissinterest among the youth
          • low income areas such as South Bronx 21.8%
        • was never elected became President through vice
          • however developed reputation of honesty
        • barley won his own party nomination
      • CARTER
        • low voter turnout again
          • 1980 53% voted in election
        • lost to Reagan 44m to 35.5m votes
          • due to inability to work with congress
          • failure in foreign affairs
        • more laid back, e.g. wore casual clothes
          • showed lack of experience

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