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Lyndon B Johnson's Report Card

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Sue Liang

on 25 March 2014

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Transcript of Lyndon B Johnson's Report Card

Reaction to New Situations
Domestic Affairs
Grade: Exceeds
Foreign Affairs

Use of Power
Grade: Exceeds
Creates Nationalism
championed a space exploration program
immediately after Kennedy's assassination, he was sworn in as president on Air Force One
Lyndon B. Johnson's Report Card
General Prestige
Short Term Grade: Acceptable
In the election of 1964, Johnson received 43,129,566 popular votes and 486 electoral votes
Johnson won by the widest margin of popular votes in American history. Additionally, he enjoyed a huge 10 to 1 victory in the electoral college.
Grade: Acceptable
Johnson's administration passed an unprecedented amount of legislation, with much of it designed to protect the nation's land, air, water, wilderness, and quality of life and furthered the Civil Rights movement.

Despite later Congressional and public disapproval due to his approach on Vietnam, Johnson still reacted swiftly to new situations and had many accomplishments within the foreign and domestic realms.
"This Nation has experienced a profound shock, and in this critical moment, it is our duty, yours and mine, as the Government of the United States, to do away with uncertainty and doubt and delay, and to show that we are capable of decisive action; that from the brutal loss of our leader we will derive not weakness, but strength; that we can and will act and act now."
Approval Ratings:
All time high: 79% just after beginning his second full term
All time low: 35% after the Tet Offensive in Vietnam
Johnson inherited the war in Vietnam and was unable to improve upon his inaugural high ratings
Grade: Acceptable
Long Term Grade: Acceptable
Johnson died about 4 years after leaving office
he spent his last years after the presidency at his ranch in Texas writing a memoir and overseeing development of his presidential library

Grade: Exceeds
Grade: Acceptable
Vision of Greater America
Grade: Exceeds
His domestic agenda, called "The Great Society," concerned bringing aid to underprivileged Americans, regulating natural resources, and protecting American consumers
Bringing Out Best In The Nation
Grade: Poor
the reaction to his liberal "Great Society" and Vietnam caused a dramatic polarization among the US
Grade: Exceeds
Grade: Exceeds
Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which ended public segregation and banned employment discrimination, and the Voting Rights Act, which stopped state and local level discrimination from prohibiting African Americans to vote.
During his six years of presidency, both Houses of Congress remained Democratic, and worked with Johnson to pass laws towards creating "A Great Society" and fighting the war on poverty.
Johnson appointed two Justices: Abe Fortas and Thurgood Marshall, who was the first African American Supreme Court Justice and a civil rights activist.
During Lyndon B. Johnson's presidency, there was ideological and political tension on the global stage.
Vietnam: Following the path that Eisenhower had taken, Johnson wanted to end communist control in Vietnam.
Anti-Communism in Latin America: To prevent communism from spreading in Latin America, Johnson created a larger U.S presence in Latin America and settled agreements over issues like the Panama Canal.
With the Soviet Premier Aleksei Kosygin, Johnson signed the Outer Space Treaty that banned the usage of nuclear arms in space or planetary orbit.
However, during the final years of his presidency, the failure to adequately react to the Tet Offensive lead to sharp decreases in Johnson's approval ratings as well as the public opinion on the Vietnam War. In sending in more troops in an era where live broadcasting of the war could be seen, Johnson created more tension in an already racial tense era.
On the global stage in multiple different occassions, Johnson was able to make quick compromises regardless of political tension.
When Fidel Castro shut down the water system in an attempt to return the Guantanamo Naval Base to Cuban control, Johnson had the Navy create their own water system.
In the aftermath of the Arab-Israeli War, Johnson and Soviet Premier Kyosygin met to discuss plans for the middle east, successfully diffusing the situation.
Innovatve (creative)
Grade: Acceptable
Grade: Exceeds
Despite sending additional troops to combat the Tet Offensive and ultimately causing public opinion on the war effort to decrease, Johnson still showed flexibility in most global and domestic situations presented, with innovation when necessary.
Use of Executive Order
Grade: Exceeds
Johnson issued 324 orders, two of which were 1141, the public policy against discrimination on the basis of age, and 11357, administration of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act through the National Highway Safety Bureau.
Expands Presidential Power
Grade: Acceptable
Presidents can expand their power through usage of the veto, negotiating with Congress, supporting the passage of a heavy amount of legislation, and selecting Supreme Court Judges who will be beneficial to them.

In expanding into the Judicial branch, Johnson was both successful and unsuccessful. In placing Thurgood Marshall as a the first African American Supreme Court Judge, Johnson furthered his Civil Rights movement.
In placing Abe Fortas, his advisor and close friend, as a fellow Supreme Court Judge, he also had negotiating power and leverage in the Supreme Court.
However, the Abe Fortas situation was not entirely successful as when Johnson nominated Fortas for the Chief Justice position, Congress filibustered against it, most likely due to the rising Congressional disapproval towards Vietnam at the time.
Grade: Exceeds

Johnson was successful in passing reform legislation, most notably the Voting Rights Act and Civil Rights Act.
Sue Liang, Sammi Moore, Megan Outlaw, Jose Leon
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