Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) was inaugurated as the President of the United States on January 30th, 1882 and left office on April 12th, 1945. Franklin D. Roosevelt was the 32nd U.S. President and played a pivotal role in world politics during the mid-twentieth century, including the global economic crisis that lasted throughout the Second World War. FDR was elected for more than two terms; a benchmark unmatched by former presidents. His campaign theme, “Happy Days Are Here Again,” echoed the achievements that renewed the national spirit once diminished by the early years of the Great Depression. His personal bout with a paralytic illness reflected his determination to make a difference as the nation’s leader. Franklin D. Roosevelt aligned with Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin to lead the Allied powers against Germany and Japan during the Second World War. FDR died just before final victory came to fruition.
Franklin D. Roosevelt issued a collection of executive orders that solidified the New Deal. The New Deal consisted of multiple programs designed to promote economic relief, recovery, and reform. His economic stimulus programs relapsed as a result of a deepening recession, and absolved when the unemployment rate improved during the Second World War. The New Deal’s imposed regulations on the free market ended between 1975 and 1985, except for the Securities and Exchange Commission, an existing regulatory branch of Wall Street. Other existing programs include the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and Social Security.
Franklin D. Roosevelt’s diplomatic and financial interventions after the Japanese invasion of China in 1938 supported China and Britain while remaining neutral under a protectionist policy. In fact, FDR wanted to supply the Allied powers with war arsenal, instead of getting directly involved in the Second World War. Additionally, FDR provided lend-lease aid to outside countries fighting Germany with Great Britain. Franklin D. Roosevelt declared war on Japan and Germany, effectively ending his protectionist policy, after the Pearl Harbor attack that occurred on December 7th, 1941. At the same time, FDR dictated the mobilization of the United States economy by supporting the Allied powers.
As Commander-in-chief, FDR executed a war strategy engulfing two fronts, including the first atomic bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Franklin D. Roosevelt further ordered over one hundred thousand Japanese-American civilians into detention centers located in the mid-West. Both fronts effectively ended the dominance of the Axis powers. After the Second World War, unemployment dropped to a staggering two percent, relief programs ended, and the industrial economy exploded as millions of people migrated from war centers to civilian jobs. Furthermore, over sixteen million men and three hundred thousand women were drafted or volunteered for military enrollment.
Franklin D. Roosevelt heavily influenced American politics far beyond his three year terms. In fact, FDR aided in the realignment of voters, which created the Fifth Party System, the new era of political policy that started with the end of the New Deal. Franklin D. Roosevelt introduced the New Deal Coalition, a proposal that united white ethnics, labor unions, and African Americans. Franklin D. Roosevelt also influenced the formation of the United Nations and Bretton Woods. History scholars often refer to FDR as one of the top three Presidents of the United States. Franklin D. Roosevelt’s slightly liberal ideologies reflected in his speech. For instance, he referred his political position and cabinet as “a little left of center.”