The Progressive Movement was a result of a century of economic and social neglect. It strived to correct the economic, social, political, and moral justices that had plagued the 19th century and to instill fairness and equal rights for all. Two key goals of the Progressive Movement were to reform the political system and to create fairness in the economic world. This was achieved through a series of left-leaning governments which established regulations and began to act as a check on corruption.
In order to combat political corruption the American government passed several amendments to the constitution. Two of these amendments were the 17th amendment and the 19th amendment. The 17th amendment created the direct election of Senators. Prior to the 17th amendment, the Senate was a corrupt house of government. Instead of representing its constituents, Senators represented the interests of their respective state party bosses. Although the 17th amendment was in the process of being created for nearly a century, it took the Progressive Movement to finally get it passed. Like the 17th amendment, the 19th amendment also changed the political culture in America. While the 17th amendment allowed for the direct election of senators nearly 50% of Americans...
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...ors is also instrumental to democracy in America because public opinion can change rapidly and what was considered to be the public’s opinion just a year ago can be vastly different now. Scott Brown’s victory in Massachusetts can be heavily attributed to the 19th amendment. The Massachusetts state government is nearly 100% democratic – yet he was still able to win, largely thanks to the democratic infrastructure set in place by the 19th amendment.
The Progressive Reform Movement serves as one of the highpoints in American history. It is a pillar of what Americans can achieve once they are provoked to change. This movement set the precedent for future movements while at the same time still affects us today because of the government institutions it has created. Through economic and political reforms, America became a better place to live, and a more just democracy.
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