FDR and the 2nd new deal... or 2nd term.

his 2nd term which is i think 1935/6

HideShow resource information

what/why was the 2nd new deal?

opposition to the 1st new deal- FDR incorporated many of Long and townsends ideas into his new reform- although he had been considering many of these ideas anyway.
- supreme court had declared some of the key new deal measures illegal e.g AAA and NIRA
- B.B opposed new deal anyway so FDR had nothing to loose by introducing more left ideas

what was the 2nd new deal
-reforms passed by congress in 1935.
- 'the most comprehensive programme of reform ever achieved in this country in any administration'- Lippnan- contemporary journalist

1 of 11

key measures

the rural electrification administration (REA) may 1935- transforms life in the american south. 1935 20% of american farms had electricty 1945- 90%

the emergency relief appropriation act ERAA- gave money to exsisting agencies eg CCC and PWA and helped fund new agencies- single largest expenditure to date in US history-4.8 billion.

- works progress administration-PWA april 1935
- the wealth tax
- the national labour relations act-WLRA
- the banking act- created centralised banking system.
- the public utilities holding company act: helped provide cheap power.
- social securities act
- resettlement administration: provided same relief to displaced tenant farmers.  

2 of 11

the wealth act

incorporated the ideas of longs share our wealth scheme.

- FDR wanted to impose high taxes on inherited wealth cooperate profits and the income of high earners.
- the act in its final form didnt set rates at levels FDR proposed.
- act linked FDR with the have nots and provoked outcry from conservatives who termed it soak the successful tax.
- act designed more to gain votes then gain revenue from rich. 

3 of 11


set up after supreme court had declared NIRA illegal- included the 7a clause guaranteeing workers collective bargaining e.g right to join union 
- led to growth of union membership and union power
- Wagner hoped that by protecting workers wages and rights there would be more consumer spending- boosts economy  
- act gave workers the gov support to join unions 6 set up a national labour relations board which negotiated on behalf of workers and restrained management from using unfair labour practises.   

4 of 11

social securities act

created a compulsory national system of old age pension and a joint federal state system of unemployment insurance. 
- system was financed out of current contributions rather than general tax revenues  therefore no payments made until 1942
- benefits were low based on previous income rather then the min required to live on
- millions of people didnt qualify for the system- farm labourers, domestic servants. these people were the ones who needed protection
- the extent of the coverage how the system was financed level of benefits & structure of administration varied from state creating too much confusion and inequality
perkins- the final bill... was the only plan that could have been put through congress
it provided a foundation on which all subsequent administrations have built upon. FDR regarded it as the conerstone of his administration.
-incorporated the ideas of the Townsend movement. 

5 of 11


aimed to provide work relief. it employed 8.5 million and spent $11 billion over a 8 yr period.managed by Hopkins. 
- under its heading to target specific groups of unemployed workers.
- responsible for over 250000 projects building roads school etc
left- disappointed it only reached 1/3rd of unemployed people at a time- paid less than average wage. failed to help those who couldn't work.
- right= believed many of its projects created work for the sake of creating work

national youth administration: gave part time employment to millions of college and high school students allowing them to continue with thier education.

the federal writers project- helped unemployed writers they prepared regional guidebooks catalogued historical records published local histories.

fed arts project: gave artists work painting schools libraries etc

fed theatre project- travelling theatre companies took drama ballet etc shows to rural communites.

6 of 11

1936 election- Alfred Landon

his policies- promised more aid to farmers, denounced the centrailising tendencies of the N.D and emphasised the republican commitment to reduce fed spending and to balance the budget. 
he had support of: B.B american liberty league and most of the main newspapers.

why did FDR win?
--> 3rd part threat didnt appear. the national union set up by support of Townsend and long had little support once long dead.
--> republican party in bad shape. party was divided between its conservative and progressive winds- it was still assosiated with the depression.
--> FDR standing was high. millions of americans had benifited from the N.D. the 135 legislation was fresh in peoples minds although 8 mill were still unemployed the economy was doing better then at any time since 1930. 
--> catholics and jews the 2 fastest growing groups in USA were for the dems.
--> FDR seen as champion of labour. trade unions gave support and generous funds to the dems.

7 of 11

problems for FDR in his 2nd term

supreme court- FDR tried to attempt to reform the S.C in 1937. most were repiblican with a laissez faire attitude which public opinion no longer shared so should be made powerless to deal with problems. after victory- determined to do battle with nine old men and presented to congress a court reorganisation plan. said that the president should be authoirised to appoint 1 additional judge for every member who passed 70 without retiring. since 6 judges were above that age FDR would be able to increase courts to 15. said it would be improved with younger members- real motive was to secure more sympathetic bench

accused of seeking his executive powers- not many liked devious apporach as he didnt consult other dems and wasnt mentioned in election. congress a long and bitter debate on the court bill devideded the dem espeically north and south- lost battle to expand court but won war. 

8 of 11

was FDR foolish?

should have consulted his fellow dems to prevent such a big argument that wasn't needed.

opposition from the southern dems: many disliked fact FDR seemed to support urban north. some thought he had dictatorship tendencies and feared he intended to revolutionise race relations. uneasy about N.D retreat from laissez faire- conservative mainly from south dem looked with distaste upon social workers who surrounded FDR.

industrial strife- NIRA and wagner helped union membership rise from over 2 mill in 1933 to almost 9 in 1938= bitter conflict both within ranks of labour and with employers. congress of industrial organisations sent a wave of strikes through industry as they wanted to be recognised. due to all strikes and some voilence publicity came away from unions and also from FDR who was blamed for activity.   

9 of 11

what was the 3rd new deal?

farm security administration had authoirty to lend money to help small farmers and to provide camps and medical care for migratory labourers. 
- wagner steagall act set up housing authority to provide aid for slum clearence
- new agricultural adjustment act reviving in modifed form its 1933 predeccessor tried to stabalise farm prices by fixing marketing quotas.
- fair labour standards act set up a min wage of 25 cents an hour to rising to 40% within 2 years and a max working week of 44 hours to be reduced in same period to 40. act forbade child labour.
southern dem had opposed act in fear that any measure that raised wages across the board would deprive their region of its competitve advantage a cheap labour market. threatened to overturn prevailing system under which blacks earn't less than whites. bill finally passed in 1938 but only after it had been amended to exclude domestic workers and farm labourers. even so the act had greatest impact in the south where 20% of workers earned below the min wage compared with only 3% in rest of USA. 

10 of 11

Roosevelt recession

FDR tried to balance budget by cutting gov spending. sent economy into reverse.
- 1937/8 sharper decline then in 1929. over 10 months industrial production fell by 1/3rd and national income by 1/10. 1938 11.5milion unemployed. several months FDR let things slide.
-april 1938 recession spelt disaster for dem midterm election- asked congress for 3.75 billion for relief and public work. congress obligated and by the summer the economy had begun slowly climbing the ladder. unemployment remained high until 1941 when the threat of war not enlightened N.D policies forced gov expenditure at levels previously unimaginable.

why FDR's 3rd term end of the N.D...
--> N.D wasnt something people supported for votes now. he proposed no new reforms as he became pre occupied  with world affairs. 
1944- he called for an economic bill of rights which guranteed americans employment decent housing a good education and protection from hazards of old age sickness but made no effort to give this. after 1941- winning WW2 was prioriety.
slum to boom- 1944 unemployment down to 620,000. personal income of farmers more than doubled. business profits rose from 6 billion in 39 to 10.5 in 45. 1940-5 usa produced over 100,000 tanks,300,000 aircrafts and 93,000 ships. by 1944 us produced twice as much as germany italy and japan combined! 

11 of 11


No comments have yet been made

Similar History resources:

See all History resources »See all America - 19th and 20th century resources »