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William Howard Taft Essay

1027 words - 5 pages

William Howard Taft was Americas 27th president. William was born on September 15, 1857. He was born in Cincinnati, Ohio into the Taft family. Taft’s dad, Alphonso Taft was a lawyer and public official; he was Presidents Grant’s secretary of war. Taft’s father was a lawyer. William’s mother Louise Maria Taft was Alphonso’s second wife. William had two half brothers, two brothers and one sister. His ancestry consists of English, Scotch-Irish. William attended a public school in Cincinnati. He went to Woodward High School and then Yale University in 1874. He was quite a smart boy; he graduated second in his whole class of Yale University. Williams’s father also attended Yale and graduated in ...view middle of the document...

Taft was opposed by William Jennings Bryan, running for a third time. Progressives were excited with Taft's election and conservatives were delighted to be rid of Roosevelt. The campaign which Taft won was more about personality than the issues. Taft won with 52% of the popular vote.
Taft knew his techniques would be different from Roosevelt. Unlike Roosevelt Taft did not believe in stretching his presidential powers. In foreign affairs Taft pursued an active role in Latin America. Taft thought of the idea of a World court to deal with issues all over the world. Domestic issues included Taft shunning many progressive republicans by defending the Payne-Aldrich act which continued high tariff taxes. A trade agreement with Canada was pushed through congress with Taft’s help, but unfortunately the Canadians rejected it.
Taft had many accomplishments as president, but many were not recognized. One accomplishment of Taft’s was 80 antitrust suits. During the Taft administration, more than twice the numbers of antitrust suits were instigated than under Roosevelt. Major victories were won against Standard Oil of New Jersey and the American Tobacco Company, the Sugar Trust and U.S. Steel. Roosevelt was generally supportive of these Taft actions, but not the move against Morgan and U.S. Steel; the former president criticized Taft by proclaiming that Taft was unable to see the difference between a good trust and a bad one. Also Taft helped support for Constitutional amendments for a Federal income tax and helped with the direct election of Senators, a postal savings system. In addition to other accomplishments Taft also helped direction to the Interstate Commerce Commission to set railroad rates. Taft was successful into pushing congress to strengthen the ICC. The Mann-Elkins Act of 1910 provided the I.C.C was empowered to fix railroad rates. This made the Interstate Commerce Commission the most influential agency of its day. An accomplishment that William also made was in early 1912, the last...

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