To what extent did the Progressive ideals change the political process? To answer this question, this investigation will focus on the Progressive Era, also known as the time period between 1890 and 1920 when the United States went through political, social and economic reform. This investigation will focus mainly on the political aspect of these reforms. The plan for the reforms of the Progressive campaign first appeared in 1890 when Americans emphasized the ideal that the state should have a larger responsibility along with desiring a government with more regulations. To investigate these changes and the ideals that led to them, a careful examination will be done of the interpretations of the Progressive movement along with amendments, regulations and reforms that were established during that time period.
B. Summary of Evidence
In the 1880s is when the first origins of the Progressive Era can be traced; however, in 1890 is when the actual form of the Progressive campaign took place (Mowry 4). By 1890, the cities in the United States were growing rapidly. There were more than 22 million people living in towns and cities comprised of more than 2,500 people. With the growth of the urban population, arose growth in perception of urban problems that would become a pivotal force in the essence of the Progressive ideals (Gould 3). The problems caused the people to believe that there should be a change executed by the government.
Republican politician, La Follette defines Progressivism with this statement “The will of the people should be the law of the land. Constitutions, statues, and all the complex details of government are but instruments to carry out the will of the people, and when they fail….they must...
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Milkis, Sidney M. Theodore Roosevelt, the Progressive Party, and the Transformation of American Democracy. Lawrence, Kan.: University of Kansas, 2009. Print.
Mowry, George E. Theodore Roosevelt and the Progressive Movement. Madison: University of Wisconsin, 1946. Print.
Sanders Romero, Francine. "The Impact Of Direct Election On Reform Votes In The U.S. Senate." Social Science Quarterly (Wiley-Blackwell) 88.3 (2007): 816-829. America: History & Life. Web. 28 Mar. 2014.
Utter, Glenn H., and Ruth Ann. Strickland. Campaign and Election Reform: A Reference Handbook. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 1997. Print.
Wright, Gerald C. "Charles Adrian And The Study Of Nonpartisan Elections." Political Research Quarterly 61.1 (2008): 13-16. America: History & Life. Web. 28 Mar. 2014.
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