Roosevelt The Progressive

To what extent did Theodore Roosevelt provide a square deal for the American people?

The actions of the muckrakers and a newly active middle class were
heard by the then Vice President of the United States, Theodore
Roosevelt. When the President, a very conservative William McKinley
was assassinated, Roosevelt became President. Roosevelt was the son
of a wealthy old money family. He was involved in government from
when he was very young. It was his belief that the wealthy had an
obligation to serve. This led him to government service. He became
the Assistant Secretary of War, left to form the Rough Riders and
took them to Cuba where he fought in the famous battle of San Juan
Hill during the taking of Cuba in the Spanish American War.

Teddy Roosevelt

I. Theodore Roosevelt – Progressive

A. The “Square Deal” – Reforms – Increase in
Federal Power, ended Laissez Faire. (Result of Roosevelt’s belief
in “Noblesse Oblige.”

“Let the watchwords of all our people be the old familiar
watchwords of honesty, decency, fair-dealing, and commonsense.”…
“We must treat each man on his worth and merits as a man. We must see
that each is given a square deal, because he is entitled to no more
and should receive no less.””The welfare of each of us is dependent
fundamentally upon the welfare of all of us.”

–New York
State Fair, Syracuse September 7, 1903

1. Sherman Anti trust Act (Felt trusts should be judged on

2. Mediated Coal Strike

3. Elkins Act (1903)

-Made it illegal for railroads and shippers to offer
rate rebates. Railroad had to set rates. They couldn’t change w/out

4. Hepburn Act (1906)

-Gave ICC the power to set maximum railroad rates.

5. Pure Food and Drug Act – Passed in 1906 and amended in
1911 to include a prohibition on misleading labeling.

6. Meat Inspection Act (1906)

7. Conservation

-Strengthening of Forest Bureau and created National
Forest Service.

-Creation of much national park land.

-Appointment of Gifford Pinchot, professional conservationist to
be in charge of national forests.

B. Roosevelt and William Howard Taft

1. Roosevelt did not run for a third term.

2. He was only in his mid fifties.

3. Stayed involved in politics.

4. Became dissatisfied with Taft and ran for a third term with a
third party, the Progressive Party, which was later nicknamed the
“Bull Moose Party.” Bull Moose Party–Nickname for the Progressive
Party of 1912. The bull moose was the emblem for the party, based on
Roosevelt’sboasting that he was “as strong as a bull moose.”


C. Election of 1912

TR is “Dee-Lighted” to throw his
hat into the ring of the 1912 presidential election.

Copyright 1997 State Historical
Society of Wisconsin

Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt (1858-1919)–A
Republican, Roosevelt served as vice president under President
William McKinley, and became president in 1901 when McKinley was
assassinated. Roosevelt was reelected in 1904, but did not seek
reelection in 1908. In his place, the republican convention nominated
as its presidential candidate William Howard Taft, who promised to
carry on Roosevelt’s policies. In 1912, feeling that his policies had
been betrayed by President Taft, Roosevelt sought, but did not get,
the Republican nomination, so he ran for president as the candidate
of the Progressive Party. With the Republican vote split between Taft
and Roosevelt, the 1912 presidential election was easily won by
Democrat Woodrow Wilson.

1. Roosevelt runs for the Progressive
Party a.k.a. The Bull Moose Party.

2. Republicans split and the Democratic candidate Woodrow Wilson