Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Ch. 15 Section 3 The Emergence of the Political Machine

Ch. 15 Section 3 The Emergence of the Political Machine

To explain the role of political machines and political bosses.
To describe how politicians’ greed and fraud cost taxpayers millions of dollars.

Focus & Motivate
Starting With the Student
Have you ever given someone a gift with the intention of getting something in return? Do you believe that such a practice is common among politicians today?

More About. . .
George Washington Plunkitt
Plunkitt believed in giving people something in exchange for their votes. He furnished emergency lodging and clothing to families hit by fire. He found jobs for the unemployed. He put in a good word for youngsters who got into trouble with the police. He paid court fines for constituents who were picked up for being drunk. “The poor are the most grateful people in the world,” he pointed out, “and, let me tell you, they have more friends in their neighborhoods than the rich have in theirs.”

Objective 1 Instruct
Political Machines Run the Cities
Discussing Key Ideas
In major cities, political machines provide services to voters in exchange for political or financial support.
Political bosses control thousands of municipal jobs and regulate business licenses and inspections.
Many of the bosses are immigrants who have worked their way up through the political system.

Objective 2 Instruct
Municipal Graft and Scandal
Discussing Key Ideas
To maintain their power and to make money, some political machines turn to election fraud, bribery, and graft.
The efforts of political cartoonist Thomas Nast help bring down Boss Tweed and Tammany Hall, New York City’s powerful Democratic machine.

History From Visuals, p. 454
“The Tammany Tiger Loose”
Viewing the Cartoon
Who are the onlookers?
Why are they allowing the tiger to attack the victim?

What cartoon can you draw to convey the same idea?

History From Visuals, p. 454
Boss Tweed’s World-Class Expenses
Reading the Chart
Look closely at Boss Tweed’s picture. Why do you think his picture is included on the bar graph?

What is the connection between the Nast cartoon, above, and the chart.
In both, Tweed is in control and the public pays.

In the late 19th century, political machines ran the major cities.

Like a pyramid—precinct workers and captains formed the base. The city boss was at the top.

Analyzing Motives
Because the machines helped them adjust to life in America.

Both amassed huge fortunes—not always legally—but also did some social good.

Section 3 Assessment

Terms & Names
Graft, p. 452
Political machine, p. 452
Kickback, p. 453
Tammany Hall, p. 454
Tweed Ring, p. 454
Thomas Nast, p. 454

Advantages: Provided people with jobs; provided public services; helped immigranat6s become citizens.

Disadvantages: Engaged in election fraud; collected kickbacks; controlled the police; granted favors to business.

Students might focus on the meaning of coerce. Although machine politicians may no have threatened people with violence, they could have caused them great hardship.
Analyzing Causes
Answers should be supported with reasons. Possible point: the rapid economic growth of large cities meant that decisions by local governments could provide people with the opportunity to make large amounts of money.

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