Foreign policy, 1933–37
The rejection of the League of Nations treaty in 1919 marked the dominance of isolationism from world organizations in American foreign policy.
Despite Roosevelt's Wilsonian background, he andSecretary of State Cordell Hull acted with great care not to provoke isolationist sentiment. Roosevelt's "bombshell" message to the world monetary conference in 1933 effectively ended any major efforts by the world powers to collaborate on ending the worldwide depression, and allowed Roosevelt a free hand in economic policy.
The main foreign policy initiative of Roosevelt's first term was the Good Neighbor Policy, which was a re-evaluation of U.S. policy towards Latin America. Since the Monroe Doctrine of 1823, this area had been seen as an American sphere of influence.
American forces were withdrawn from Haiti, and new treaties with Cuba and Panama ended their status as United States protectorates. In December 1933, Roosevelt signed the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States, renouncing the right to intervene unilaterally in the affairs of Latin American countries.
The isolationist movement was bolstered in the early to mid 1930's by U.S. Senator Gerald Nye and others who succeeded in their effort to stop the "merchants of death" in the U.S. from selling arms abroad. This effort took the form of the Neutrality Acts;
the president asked for, but was refused, a provision to give him the discretion to allow the sale of arms to victims of aggression.In the interim, Italy and Mussolini proceeded to overcome Ethiopia and the Italians joined the Germans in co-opting a successful revolt in Spain.
In 1936 Germany and Japan signed their Anti-Comintern Pact, allowing their Axis to develop united strategies. And thus had the congress passed and the president signed a mandatory arms embargo at a time when dictators in Europe and Asia were girding for world war.
Landslide re-election, 1936
In the 1936 presidential election, Roosevelt campaigned on his New Deal programs against Kansas Governor Alf Landon, who accepted much of the New Deal but objected that it was hostile to business and involved too much waste.
Roosevelt and Garner won 60.8% of the vote and carried every state except Maine and Vermont. The New Deal Democrats won even larger majorities in Congress. Roosevelt was backed by a coalition of voters which included traditional Democrats across the country, small farmers, the "Solid South",
Catholics, big city political machines, labor unions, northern African Americans, Jews, intellectuals and political liberals. This coalition, frequently referred to as the New Deal coalition, remained largely intact for the Democratic Party until the 1960s.
Roosevelt's popularity meant massive volumes of correspondence in need of reply. He once told his son James, "Two short sentences will generally answer any known letter."
Second term, 1937–1941
In contrast to the first term, little major legislation was passed in FDR's second term.
There was the Housing Act of 1937, a second Agricultural Adjustment Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act(FLSA) of 1938, which created the minimum wage. When the economy began to deteriorate again in late 1937, Roosevelt asked Congress for $5 billion in WPA relief and public works funding.
This managed to eventually create as many as 3.3 million WPA jobs by 1938. Beyond this, however, the president only recommended to a special congressional session a permanent national farm act, administrative reorganization and regional planning measures, which were leftovers from a regular session.
According to Burns, this attempt illustrated Roosevelt's inability to decide on a basic economic program.
The Supreme Court became Roosevelt's primary focus during his second term, after the court overturned many of his programs.
In particular in 1935 the Court unanimously ruled that the National Recovery Act (NRA) was an unconstitutional delegation of legislative power to the president. Roosevelt stunned Congress in early 1937 by proposing a law allowing him to appoint up to six new justices, what he referred to as a "persistent infusion of new blood."
This "court packing" plan ran into intense political opposition from his own party, led by Vice President Garner, since it upset the separation of powers and gave the President control over the Court. Roosevelt's proposals for the court failed; shortly thereafter the president took another political fall with the nomination of Hugo Black to the court.
After Black was confirmed, Black and Roosevelt were widely attacked in the press when it was revealed that Black had been a member of the Ku Klux Klan. Nevertheless, by 1941 Roosevelt had appointed eight justices to the court.
Roosevelt had massive support from the rapidly growing labor unions, but now they split into bitterly feuding AFL and CIO factions, the latter led by John L. Lewis.
Roosevelt pronounced a "plague on both your houses," but labor's disunity weakened the party in the elections from 1938 through 1946.
Determined to overcome the opposition of conservative Democrats in Congress (mostly from the South),
Roosevelt involved himself in the 1938 Democratic primaries, actively campaigning for challengers who were more supportive of New Deal reform. His targets denounced Roosevelt for trying to take over the Democratic party and used the argument that they were independent to win reelection.
Roosevelt failed badly, managing to defeat only one target, a conservative Democrat from New York City.
In the November 1938 election, Democrats lost six Senate seats and 71 House seats. Losses were concentrated among pro-New Deal Democrats.
When Congress reconvened in 1939, Republicans under Senator Robert Taft formed a Conservative coalition with Southern Democrats, virtually ending Roosevelt's ability to get his domestic proposals enacted into law. The minimum wage law of 1938 was the last substantial New Deal reform act passed by Congress.
Foreign policy, 1937–1941
The rise to power of dictator Adolf Hitler in Germany had aroused fears of a new world war. Nevertheless, in 1937 Congress passed an even more stringent Neutrality act. But when the Sino-Japanese War broke out that year, public opinion favored China, and Roosevelt found various ways to assist that nation.Sony VAIO VGN-SR49VN/H Battery
In October 1937, he gave the Quarantine Speech aiming to contain aggressor nations. He proposed that warmongering states be treated as a public health menace and be "quarantined." Meanwhile he secretly stepped up a program to build long range submarines that could blockade Japan.
At the time of the Munich Agreement in 1938—with the U.S. not represented—Roosevelt said the U.S. would not join a “stop-Hitler bloc” under any circumstances, and he made it quite clear in the event of German aggression against Czechoslovakia, the U.S. would remain neutral.
Because of widespread isolationist sentiment Roosevelt said in 1939 that that France and Britain were America's "first line of defence" and needed American aid, but reiterated the U.S. would not itself go to war. In the spring of 1939 FDR allowed the French to place huge orders with the American aircraft industry on a cash-and-carry basis,
as allowed by law. Most of the aircraft ordered had not arrived in France by the time of its collapse in May 1940, so Roosevelt arranged in June 1940 for French orders to be sold to the British.
When World War II broke out in 1939, Roosevelt rejected the Wilsonian neutrality stance and sought ways to assist Britain and France militarily.
At first the President gave only covert support to repeal of the arms embargo provisions of the Neutrality Act. He began a regular secret correspondence with the First Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill in September 1939 discussing ways of supporting Britain.
Roosevelt forged a close personal relationship with Churchill, who became Prime Minister of Britain in May 1940.
In April 1940 Germany invaded Denmark and Norway, followed by invasions of the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg and France in May.
The German victories in Western Europe left Britain vulnerable to invasion. Roosevelt, who was determined that Britain not be defeated, took advantage of the rapid shifts of public opinion. The fall of Paris shocked American opinion, and isolationist sentiment declined.
A consensus was clear that military spending had to be dramatically expanded. There was no consensus on how much the U.S. should risk war in helping Britain. In July 1940, FDR appointed two interventionist Republican leaders, Henry L. Stimson and Frank Knox, as Secretaries of War and the Navy respectively.
Both parties gave support to his plans to rapidly build up the American military, but the isolationists warned that Roosevelt would get the nation into an unnecessary war with Germany. Congress set up the nation's first peacetime draft.
Roosevelt used his personal charisma to build support for intervention. America should be the "Arsenal of Democracy", he told his fireside audience. On September 2, 1940, Roosevelt openly defied the Neutrality Acts by passing the Destroyers for Bases Agreement, which,
in exchange for military base rights in the British Caribbean Islands, gave 50 American destroyers to Britain. The US also received free base rights in Bermuda and Newfoundland, allowing British forces to be moved to the sharper end of the war; the idea of an exchange of warships for bases such as these originated in the cabinet.
Hitler and Mussolini responded to the deal by joining with Japan in the Tripartite Pact. The agreement with Britain was a precursor of the March 1941 Lend-Lease agreement which began to direct massive military and economic aid to Britain, the Republic of China, and later the Soviet Union.
For foreign policy advice, Roosevelt turned to Harry Hopkins, who became his chief wartime advisor. They sought innovative ways to help Britain, whose financial resources were exhausted by the end of 1940, short of going to war.Congress, where isolationist sentiment was waning, passed the Lend-Lease Act in March 1941,
allowing the U.S. to give Britain, China and later the Soviet Union military supplies. The legislation had hit a logjam until Sens. Byrd, Byrnes and Taft added a provision subjecting it to appropriation by Congress. Congress voted to commit to spend $50 billion on military supplies from 1941 to 1945.
In sharp contrast to the loans of World War I, there would be no repayment after the war. Until late in 1941, FDR refused Churchill's urgent requests for escort of ships provided to Britain, insisting on a more passive patroling function. Roosevelt was a lifelong free trader and anti-imperialist, and ending European colonialism was one of his objectives.
Election of 1940
The two-term tradition had been an unwritten rule (until the 22nd Amendment after his presidency) since George Washington declined to run for a third term in 1796, and both Ulysses S. Grant andTheodore Roosevelt were attacked for trying to obtain a third non-consecutive term.
FDR systematically undercut prominent Democrats who were angling for the nomination, including two cabinet members, Secretary of State Cordell Hull and James Farley, Roosevelt's campaign manager in 1932 and 1936, Postmaster General and Democratic Party chairman.
Roosevelt moved the convention to Chicago where he had strong support from the city machine (which controlled the auditorium sound system). At the convention the opposition was poorly organized but Farley had packed the galleries. Roosevelt sent a message saying that he would not run, unless he was drafted, and that the delegates were free to vote for anyone.
The delegates were stunned; then the loudspeaker screamed "We want Roosevelt... The world wants Roosevelt!" The delegates went wild and he was nominated by 946 to 147 on the first ballot. The tactic employed by Roosevelt was not entirely successful, as his goal had been to be drafted by acclamation.
The new vice presidential nominee was Henry A. Wallace, a liberal intellectual who was Secretary of Agriculture.
In his campaign against Republican Wendell Willkie, Roosevelt stressed both his proven leadership experience and his intention to do everything possible to keep the United States out of war.
In one of his speeches he declared to potential recruits that "you boys are not going to be sent into any foreign war." He won the 1940 election with 55% of the popular vote and 38 of the 48 states. A shift to the left within the Administration was shown by the naming of Henry A.
Wallace as Vice President in place of the conservative Texan John Nance Garner, who had become a bitter enemy of Roosevelt after 1937.
Third term, 1941–1945
Roosevelt's third term was dominated by World War II, in Europe and in the Pacific.
Roosevelt slowly began re-armament in 1938 since he was facing strong isolationist sentiment from leaders like Senators William Borah and Robert Taft who opposed re-armament. By 1940, it was in high gear, with bipartisan support, partly to expand and re-equip the Army and Navy and partly to become the "Arsenal of Democracy" supporting Britain,
France, China and (after June 1941), the Soviet Union. As Roosevelt took a firmer stance against the Axis Powers, American isolationists—including Charles Lindbergh and America First—vehemently attacked the President as an irresponsible warmonger.
Roosevelt initiated FBIand Internal Revenue Service investigations of his loudest critics; no legal actions resulted. Unfazed by these criticisms, and confident in the wisdom of his foreign policy initiatives, FDR continued his twin policies of preparedness and aid to the Allied coalition.
On December 29, 1940, he delivered his Arsenal of Democracy fireside chat, in which he made the case for involvement directly to the American people, and a week later he delivered his famous Four Freedoms speech in January 1941, further laying out the case for an American defense of basic rights throughout the world.
The military buildup spurred economic growth. By 1941, unemployment had fallen to under 1 million. There was a growing labor shortage in all the nation's major manufacturing centers, accelerating the Great Migration of African Americans from farms in the South, and of underemployed farmers and workers from all rural areas and small towns.
The homefront was subject to dynamic social changes throughout the war, though domestic issues were no longer Roosevelt's most urgent policy concerns. However, in 1941 FDR did propose that Congress enact an income tax rate of 99.5% on all income over $100,000; when the proposal failed, he issued an executive order imposing an income tax of 100% on income over $25,000, which Congress rescinded.
When Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union in June 1941, Roosevelt agreed with Stalin to extend Lend-Lease to the Soviets. Thus, Roosevelt had committed the U.S. to the Allied side with a policy of "all aid short of war." Execution of the aid fell victim to foot dragging in the administration.
FDR appointed a special assistant, Wayne Coy, to expedite matters. Later that year a German submarine fired on the U.S. destroyer Greer, and Roosevelt agreed that the U.S. Navy would assume an escort role for Allied convoys as far east as Great Britain and would fire upon German ships or submarines (U-boats) of the Kriegsmarine if they entered the U.S.
Navy zone. This "shoot on sight" policy effectively declared Naval war on Germany, and was favored by Americans by a margin of 2-to-1.
Roosevelt and Churchill conducted a highly secret bilateral meeting in Argentia in Newfoundland,
and on August 14, 1941, concluded their Atlantic Charter, conceptually outlining global goals following the war; this was the first of several wartime conferences.In July 1941, Roosevelt had ordered Henry Stimson, Secretary of War to begin planning for total American military involvement.
The resulting "Victory Program," under the direction of Albert Wedemeyer, provided the President with the estimates necessary for the total mobilization of manpower, industry, and logistics to defeat the "potential enemies" of the United States. The program also planned to dramatically increase aid to the Allied nations and to have ten million men in arms,
half of whom would be ready for deployment abroad in 1943. Roosevelt was firmly committed to the Allied cause and these plans had been formulated before the Attack on Pearl Harbor by the Empire of Japan.
Congress was debating a modification of The Neutrality Act in October 1941, when the USS Kearny, along with other ships, engaged a number of U-boats south of Iceland; the Kearny took fire and lost eleven crewmen.
As a result in part, The Neutrality Act was passed in both houses of Congress to permit the arming of the merchant marine, though this was yet by razor thin margins.
In 1942, war production increased dramatically, but fell short of the goals established by the President, due in part to manpower shortages.
The effort was also hindered by numerous strikes by union workers, especially in the coal mining industry, which lasted well into 1944, and also on the railroads.The White House became the ultimate site for labor mediation, conciliation or arbitration.
One particular battle royal occurred, between Vice-President Wallace, who headed the BEW, and Jesse Jones, in charge of the RFC; both agencies assumed responsibility for acquisition of rubber supplies and came to loggerheads over funding. FDR resolved the dispute by dissolving and replacing the two agencies as well as the two agency heads.
In 1944 the President requested Congress enact legislation which would tax all unreasonable profits, both corporate and individual, and thereby support his declared need for over ten billion in revenue for the war and other government measures. The Congress passed a revenue bill raising 2 billion, which FDR vetoed, which Congress in turn overrode.
Pearl Harbor and declarations of war
After Japan occupied northern French Indochina in late 1940, FDR authorized increased aid to the Republic of China. In July 1941, after Japan occupied the remainder of Indo-China, he cut off the sale of oil to Japan. Japan thus lost more than 95 percent of its oil supply.
Roosevelt continued negotiations with the Japanese government, primarily through Secretary Hull. Japan Premier Konoye desired a Pacific conference with FDR which U.S. Ambassador Joseph Grew favored but which Hull opposed. When Kenoye failed to produce diplomatic results, Emperor Hirohito replaced him with Minister of War Tojo.
Meanwhile Roosevelt started shifting the long-range B-17 bomber force to the Philippines.
According to biographer Burns, before December FDR felt that an attack by the Japanese was probable – most likely in the Dutch East Indies or Thailand.
On December 4, 1941, The Chicago Tribune published the complete text of "Rainbow Five," a top-secret war plan drawn up by the War Department. It dealt chiefly with mobilization issues, calling for a 10-million man army.
The great majority of scholars have rejected the conspiracy thesis that Roosevelt,
or anyone any other high government officials, knew in advance about the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The Japanese had done a very good job in keeping their secrets. All senior American officials were aware that war was imminent and none expected an attack on Pearl Harbor.
On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attacked the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, destroying or damaging 16 warships, including most of the fleet's battleships, and killing almost 3000 American military personnel and civilians. Later that day, FDR called Churchill to confirm the news, saying "We are all in the same boat now."
The President summoned his cabinet to assess events and to review a draft of his speech the next day to Congress. He rejected a suggestion for requesting a declaration of war against Germany in addition to Japan. Roosevelt, seeking a declaration of war against Japan,
then delivered to Congress his famous "Infamy Speech" in which he said, "Yesterday, December 7, 1941 – a date which will live in infamy — the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan."Within an hour of the speech, Congress had passed a declaration of war, as Britain had just hours earlier.
Roosevelt and his military advisors implemented a war strategy with the objectives of halting the German advances in the Soviet Union and in North Africa; launching an invasion of western Europe with the aim of crushing Nazi Germany between two fronts; and saving China and defeating Japan.
Public opinion, however, gave priority to destruction of Japan, so American forces were sent chiefly to the Pacific in 1942.
In the opening weeks Japan conquered the Philippines and the British and Dutch colonies in Southeast Asia, capturing Singapore in February 1942.
Furthermore Japan defeated the British in Burma to the borders of British India by May, 1942, cutting off the overland supply route to China.
Antiwar sentiment in the United States evaporated overnight and the country united behind Roosevelt. On December 11, 1941, Germany and Italy declared war on the United States, which responded in kind.
Roosevelt met with Churchill in late December and planned a broad informal alliance among the U.S., Britain, China and the Soviet Union. This included Churchill's initial plan to invade North Africa (called Operation Gymnast) and the primary plan of the U.S. generals for a western Europe invasion, focused directly on Germany (Operation Sledgehammer).
An agreement was also reached for a centralized command and offensive in the Pacific theater called ABDA (American, British, Dutch, Australian) to save China and defeat Japan. Nevertheless, the Atlantic First strategy was intact, to Churchill's great satisfaction.
On New Years Day of 1942 Churchill and FDR issued the "Declaration by United Nations", representing 26 countries in opposition to the Tripartite Pact.
Internment of Germans, Japanese and Italians
When the war began the danger of a Japanese attack on the coast led to growing pressure to remove people of Japanese descent away from the coastal region.
This pressure grew due to fears of terrorism, espionage, and/or sabotage. On February 19, 1942, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 which relocated the "Issei" (first generation of Japanese immigrants who did not have U.S. citizenship) and their children, "Nisei" (who had dual citizenship).
After both Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy declared war on the United States in December 1941, German and Italian citizens who had not taken out American citizenship and who spoke out for Hitler and Mussolini were often arrested or interned.
The "Big Three" (Roosevelt, Churchill, and Joseph Stalin), together with Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek cooperated informally on a plan in which American and British troops concentrated in the West, Russian troops fought on the Eastern front, and Chinese,
British and American troops fought in Asia and the Pacific. The Allies formulated strategy in a series of high profile conferences as well as contact through diplomatic and military channels. Roosevelt guaranteed that the U.S. would be the "Arsenal of Democracy" by shipping $50 billion of Lend Lease supplies, primarily to Britain and to the USSR, China and other Allies.
Roosevelt acknowledged that Americans had a traditional antipathy towards the British Empire, saying:
- "It's in the American tradition, this distrust, this dislike and even hatred of Britain– the Revolution, you know, and 1812; and India and the Boer War, and all that.Sony VAIO VGN-NW91FS Battery
There are many kinds of Americans of course, but as a people, as a country, we're opposed to Imperialism—we can't stomach it."
The U.S. War Department believed that the quickest way to defeat Germany was to invade France across the English Channel.
Churchill, wary of the casualties he feared this would entail, favored a more indirect approach, advancing northwards from the Mediterranean Sea. Roosevelt rejected this plan. Stalin advocated opening a Western front at the earliest possible time, as the bulk of the land fighting in 1942–44 was on Soviet soil.
In May 1942 Stalin's Minister of Foreign AffairsVyacheslav Molotov met with Roosevelt in Washington and got from FDR a commitment to the opening of a second war front in 1942 against the Germans, by way of England. Shortly thereafter a postponement of this became necessary, and Churchill carried the news to Stalin in Moscow.
In October 1942, the President was advised that military resources were desperately needed at Gaudalcanal to prevent overrunning by the Japanese. FDR heeded the advice, redirected armaments and the Japanese Pacific offensive was stalled.
The Allies undertook the invasions of French Morocco and Algeria (Operation Torch) in November 1942.
FDR very much desired the assault be initiated before election day, but did not order it. FDR and Churchill had another war conference in Cassablanca in January 1943; Stalin declined an invitation. The Allies agreed strategically that the Mediterranean focus be continued, with the cross-channel invasion coming later, followed by concentration of efforts in the Pacific.
Hitler reinforced his military in North Africa, with the result that the Allied efforts there suffered a temporary setback; Allied attempts to counterbalance this were successful, but resulted in war supplies to Russia being delayed, as well as the second war front.
Later, their assault pursued into Sicily (Operation Husky) followed in July 1943, and of Italy (Operation Avalanche) in September 1943. In 1943 it was apparent to FDR that Stalin, while bearing the brunt of Germany's offensive, had not had sufficient opportunity to participate in war conferences.
The President made a concerted effort to arrange a one-on-one meeting with Stalin, in Fairbanks. However, when Stalin learned that Roosevelt and Churchill had postponed the cross-channel invasion a second time, he cancelled. The strategic bombing campaign was escalated in 1944, pulverizing all major German cities and cutting off oil supplies.
It was a 50–50 British-American operation. Roosevelt picked Dwight D. Eisenhower, and not George Marshall, to head the Allied cross-channel invasion, Operation Overlord that began on D-Day, June 6, 1944. Some of the most costly battles of the war ensued after the invasion, and the Allies were blocked on the German border in the "Battle of the Bulge" in December 1944.
When Roosevelt died on April 12, 1945, Allied forces were closing in on Berlin.
Meanwhile, in the Pacific, the Japanese advance reached its maximum extent by June 1942, when the U.S. Navy scored a decisive victory at the Battle of Midway.
American and Australian forces then began a slow and costly progress called island hopping or leapfrogging through the Pacific Islands, with the objective of gaining bases from which strategic airpower could be brought to bear on Japan and from which Japan could ultimately be invaded.
In contrast to Hitler, Roosevelt took no direct part in the tactical naval operations, though he approved strategic decisions. FDR gave way in part to insistent demands from the public and Congress that more effort be devoted against Japan; he always insisted on Germany first.
By late 1943, it was apparent that the Allies would ultimately defeat the enemy so it became increasingly important to make high-level political decisions about the course of the war and the postwar future of Europe.
Roosevelt met with Churchill and the Chinese leader Chiang Kai-shek at the Cairo Conference in November 1943, and then went to the Tehran Conference to confer with Churchill and Stalin. While Churchill warned of potential domination by a Stalin dictatorship over eastern Europe,
Roosevelt responded with a statement summarizing his rationale for relations with Stalin: "I just have a hunch that Stalin is not that kind of a man. . . . I think that if I give him everything I possibly can and ask for nothing from him in return, noblesse oblige, he won't try to annex anything and will work with me for a world of democracy and peace."
At the Tehran Conference, Roosevelt and Churchill discussed plans for a postwar international organization. For his part, Stalin insisted on redrawing the frontiers of Poland. Stalin supported Roosevelt's plan for the United Nations and promised to enter the war against Japan 90 days after Germany was defeated.
By the beginning of 1945, however, with the Allied armies advancing into Germany and the Soviets in control of Poland, the postwar issues came into the open. In February, Roosevelt traveled to Yalta, in the Soviet Crimea, to meet again with Stalin and Churchill.
While Roosevelt maintained his confidence that Stalin would keep his Yalta promises regarding free elections in eastern Europe, one month after Yalta ended, Roosevelt's Ambassador to the USSR Averill Harriman cabled Roosevelt that "we must come clearly to realize that the Soviet program is the establishment of totalitarianism,
ending personal liberty and democracy as we know it." Two days later, Roosevelt began to admit that his view of Stalin had been excessively optimistic and that "Averell is right."
Roosevelt, who turned 62 in 1944, had been in declining health since at least 1940.
Noticeably fatigued, in March of 1944, he went to Bethesda Hospital for tests, the results of which were startling. The strain of his paralysis and the physical exertion needed to compensate for it for over 20 years had taken their toll, as had many years of stress and smoking.
The tests showed Roosevelt had numerous ailments including chronic high blood pressure, systemic atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease with angina pectoris, and myopathic hypertensive heart disease with congestive heart failure.
Election of 1944
Party leaders insisted that Roosevelt drop Henry A. Wallace, who had been erratic as Vice President and was too pro-Soviet. James F. Byrnes of South Carolina, a top FDR aide, was considered ineligible because he had left the Catholic Church and Catholic voters would not accept him.
Roosevelt replaced Wallace with Missouri Senator Harry S. Truman, best known for his battle against corruption and inefficiency in wartime spending. The Republicans nominated Thomas E. Dewey, the liberal governor of New York. The opposition lambasted FDR and his administration for domestic corruption,
bureaucratic inefficiency, tolerance of Communism, and military blunders. Labor unions, which had grown rapidly in the war, threw their all-out support behind Roosevelt. In a relatively close1944 election, Roosevelt and Truman won 53% of the vote and carried 36 states.
The President campaigned in favor of a strong United Nations, so his victory symbolized support for the nation's future participation in the international community.
Due to the President's health and the ongoing state of war, the President's fourth inauguration was held on the White House lawn.
Last days, death and memorial
The President left the Yalta Conference on February 12, 1945, and flew to Egypt and boarded the USS Quincy operating on the Great Bitter Lake near the Suez Canal. Aboard Quincy, the next day he met with Farouk I, king of Egypt, and Haile Selassie, emperor of Ethiopia.
On February 14, he held a historic meeting with King Abdulaziz, the founder of Saudi Arabia, a meeting some historians believe holds profound significance in U.S.-Saudi relations even today. After a final meeting between Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill,
Quincy steamed for Algiers, arriving February 18, at which time Roosevelt conferred with American ambassadors to Britain, France and Italy. At Yalta, Lord Moran, Winston Churchill's physician, commenting on Roosevelt's ill health, said that he was a dying man.
When he returned to the United States, he addressed Congress on March 1 about the Yalta Conference, and many were shocked to see how old, thin and frail he looked. He spoke while seated in the well of the House, an unprecedented concession to his physical incapacity.
Roosevelt opened his speech by saying, "I hope that you will pardon me for this unusual posture of sitting down during the presentation of what I want to say, but...it makes it a lot easier for me not to have to carry about ten pounds of steel around on the bottom of my legs."
Still in full command mentally, he firmly stated "The Crimean Conference ought to spell the end of a system of unilateral action, the exclusive alliances, the spheres of influence, the balances of power, and all the other expedients that have been tried for centuries– and have always failed.
We propose to substitute for all these, a universal organization in which all peace-loving nations will finally have a chance to join."
During March 1945, he sent strongly worded messages to Stalin accusing him of breaking his Yalta commitments over Poland, Germany, prisoners of warand other issues.
When Stalin accused the western Allies of plotting a separate peace with Hitler behind his back, Roosevelt replied: "I cannot avoid a feeling of bitter resentment towards your informers, whoever they are, for such vile misrepresentations of my actions or those of my trusted subordinates."
On March 29, 1945, Roosevelt went to Warm Springs to rest before his anticipated appearance at the founding conference of the United Nations. On the afternoon of April 12, Roosevelt said, "I have a terrific pain in the back of my head." He then slumped forward in his chair, unconscious, and was carried into his bedroom.
The president's attending cardiologist, Dr. Howard Bruenn, diagnosed a massive cerebral hemorrhage (stroke). At 3:35 pm that day, Roosevelt died. As Allen Drury later said, “so ended an era, and so began another.” After Roosevelt's death an editorial by The New York Times declared,
"Men will thank God on their knees a hundred years from now that Franklin D. Roosevelt was in the White House".
At the time he collapsed, Roosevelt had been sitting for a portrait painting by the artist Elizabeth Shoumatoff, known as the famous Unfinished Portrait of FDR.
In his later years at the White House, Roosevelt was increasingly overworked and his daughter Anna Roosevelt Boettiger had moved in to provide her father companionship and support. Anna had also arranged for her father to meet with his former mistress, the now widowed Lucy Mercer Rutherfurd.
Shoumatoff, who maintained close friendships with both Roosevelt and Mercer, rushed Mercer away to avoid negative publicity and implications of infidelity. When Eleanor heard about her husband's death, she was also faced with the news that Anna had been arranging these meetings with Mercer and that Mercer had been with Franklin when he died.
On the morning of April 13, Roosevelt's body was placed in a flag-draped coffin and loaded onto the presidential train. After a White House funeral on April 14, Roosevelt was transported back to Hyde Park by train, guarded by four servicemen from the Army, Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard.
As was his wish, Roosevelt was buried in the Rose Garden of the Springwood estate, the Roosevelt family home in Hyde Park on April 15. Eleanor, who died in November 1962, was buried next to him.
Roosevelt's death was met with shock and grief across the U.S. and around the world.
His declining health had not been known to the general public. Roosevelt had been president for more than 12 years, longer than any other person, and had led the country through some of its greatest crises to the impending defeat of Nazi Germany and to within sight of the defeat of Japan as well.
Less than a month after his death, on May 8, came the moment Roosevelt fought for: V-E Day. President Harry Truman, who turned 61 that day, dedicated V-E Day and its celebrations to Roosevelt's memory, as well as keeping the flags across the U.S. at half-staff for the remainder of the 30-day mourning period.
In doing so, Truman said that his only wish was "that Franklin D. Roosevelt had lived to witness this day."
Administration, Cabinet, and Supreme Court appointments 1933–1945
President Roosevelt appointed eight Justices to the Supreme Court of the United States, more than any other President except George Washington, who appointed ten.
By 1941, eight of the nine Justices were Roosevelt appointees. Harlan Fiske Stone was elevated to Chief Justice from the position of Associate Justice by Roosevelt.
Roosevelt's appointees would not share ideologies, and some, like Hugo Black and Felix Frankfurter, would become "lifelong adversaries."
Frankfurter even labeled his more liberal colleagues Rutledge, Murphy, Black, and Douglas as part of an "Axis" of opposition to his judicially conservative agenda.
Race and civil rights
Roosevelt was a hero to major minority groups, especially African-Americans, Catholics, and Jews, and was highly successful in attracting large majorities of these voters into his New Deal coalition.
He won strong support from Chinese Americans and Filipino Americans, but not Japanese Americans.
African-Americans and Native Americans fared well in two New Deal relief programs, the Indian Reorganization Act and the Civilian Conservation Corps.
Sitkoff reported that the WPA "provided an economic floor for the whole black community in the 1930s, rivaling both agriculture and domestic service as the chief source" of income.
Roosevelt needed the support of Southern Democrats for his New Deal programs,
and he therefore decided not to push for anti-lynching legislation that could not pass and might threaten his ability to pass his highest priority programs—though he did denounce lynchings as "a vile form of collective murder".
Historian Kevin J. McMahon claims that strides were made for the civil rights of African Americans.
In Roosevelt's Justice Department, the Civil Rights Section worked closely with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Roosevelt worked with other civil rights groups on cases dealing with police brutality, lynching, and voting rights abuses.
Beginning in the 1960s FDR was charged with not acting decisively enough to prevent or stop the Holocaust. Critics cite instances such as the 1939 episode in which 936 Jewish refugees on theSS St. Louis were denied asylum and not allowed into the United States because of strict laws passed by Congress.
The issue of desegregating the armed forces did not arise, but Roosevelt in 1940, Roosevelt appointed Hastie to be a civilian aide to Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson. On the home front on June 25, 1941, Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8802, forbidding discrimination on account of "race,
creed, color, or national origin" in the hiring of workers in defense related industries. This was a precursor to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act to come decades later.
Enemy aliens and people of Japanese ancestry fared badly. On February 19, 1942,
Roosevelt issued Executive Order 9066 that applied to everyone classified as an "enemy alien", including people who had dual citizenship living in designated high-risk areas that covered most of the cities on the West Coast. With the U.S at war with Italy, some 600,000 Italian aliens (citizens of Italy who did not have U.S. citizenship)
were subjected to strict travel restrictions; the restrictions were lifted in October 1942.
Some 120,000 people of Japanese ancestry were forced to leave the West Coast. From 1942 to 1945, they lived in internment camps inland. Those outside the West Coast, and in Hawaii, were not affected.
A majority of polls rank Roosevelt as the second or third greatest president, consistent with other surveys. Roosevelt is the sixth most admired person from the 20th century by US citizens, according to Gallup.
Both during and after his terms, critics of Roosevelt questioned not only his policies and positions, but also the consolidation of power that occurred because of his lengthy tenure as president, his service during two major crises, and his enormous popularity.
The rapid expansion of government programs that occurred during Roosevelt's term redefined the role of the government in the United States, and Roosevelt's advocacy of government social programs was instrumental in redefining liberalism for coming generations.
Roosevelt firmly established the United States' leadership role on the world stage, with pronouncements such as his Four Freedoms speech, forming a basis for the active role of the United States in the war and beyond. Reflecting on Roosevelt's presidency,
"which brought the United States through the Great Depression and World War II to a prosperous future", said FDR's biographer Jean Edward Smith in 2007, "He lifted himself from a wheelchair to lift the nation from its knees."
In 1945, Roosevelt was mentioned by Halvdan Koht among seven candidates that were qualified for the Nobel Prize in Peace.
However, he did not explicitly nominate any of them. The person actually nominated was Cordell Hull.
Roosevelt was a strong supporter of scouting, beginning in 1915. In 1924, he became president of the New York City Boy Scout Foundation and led the development of Ten Mile River Boy Scout Campbetween 1924 and 1928 to serve the Scouts of New York City.
As governor in 1930, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) honored him with their highest award for adults, the Silver Buffalo Award, which is conferred in recognition of distinguished support of youth on a national level. Later, as U.S. president, Roosevelt was honorary president of the BSA and attended the first national jamboreein Washington, D.C. in 1937.
After the President's death, Eleanor Roosevelt continued to be a forceful presence in U.S. and world politics, serving as delegate to the conference which established the United Nations and championing civil rights.
Many members of his administration played leading roles in the administrations of Truman,Kennedy and Johnson, each of whom embraced Roosevelt's political legacy.
Roosevelt's home in Hyde Park is now a National Historic Site and home to his Presidential library.
His retreat at Warm Springs, Georgia is a museum operated by the state of Georgia. His summer retreat on Campobello Island is maintained by the governments of both Canada and the United States asRoosevelt Campobello International Park; the island is accessible by way of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Bridge.
The Roosevelt Memorial is located in Washington, D.C. next to the Jefferson Memorial on the Tidal Basin, and Roosevelt's image appears on the Roosevelt dime. Many parks and schools, as well as an aircraft carrier and a Paris subway station and hundreds of streets and squares both across the US and the rest of the world have been named in his honor.
Roosevelt's leadership in the March of Dimes is one reason he is commemorated on the American dime.
Roosevelt was honored by the United States Postal Service with a Prominent Americans series 6¢ postage stamp, issue of 1966. Roosevelt also appears on several other U.S. Postage stamps.Sony VAIO VGN-FW91NS Battery,Sony VAIO VGN-FW90S Battery,Sony VAIO VGN-FW90NS Battery,Sony VAIO VGN-FW90HS Battery,Sony VAIO VGN-FW83XS Battery,Sony VAIO VGN-FW83JS Battery,Sony VAIO VGN-FW83DS Battery