Gerald J. Boileau and the Progressive-Farmer-Labor Alliance: Politics of the New Deal

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In this important study, James Lorence traces the political career of Gerald J. Boileau, the prominent Wisconsin Progressive who served in the House of Representatives from 1930 to 1938. In addition, he sheds new light on the promise and ultimate failure of the liberal Left in the 1930s - which many believed would revolutionize the two-party system. Lorence closely examines the collaboration in Congress between the Wisconsin Progressives and the Minnesota Farmer-Laborites, revealing the influence of midwestern ...
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Overview

In this important study, James Lorence traces the political career of Gerald J. Boileau, the prominent Wisconsin Progressive who served in the House of Representatives from 1930 to 1938. In addition, he sheds new light on the promise and ultimate failure of the liberal Left in the 1930s - which many believed would revolutionize the two-party system. Lorence closely examines the collaboration in Congress between the Wisconsin Progressives and the Minnesota Farmer-Laborites, revealing the influence of midwestern farmer-laborism on the national political developments of the New Deal era. Focusing on the congressional debates of the 1930s, Lorence demonstrates that third-party politics played a more active role in the House than previous studies have acknowledged. Because of Boileau's role as Progressive Group floor leader in the Seventy-fourth and Seventy-fifth congresses, he was an important figure in the effort to move the Roosevelt administration in a leftward direction. Lorence's examination of Boileau's political career begins with his service as a Wisconsin district attorney in the 1920s, continues through his active congressional career in the 1930s, and concludes with his final years as a Wisconsin circuit judge. The book also addresses such important political issues faced by Congress as farm policy, military relations, foreign policy, monetary inflation, and unemployment relief. Using archival research and statistical analysis of congressional roll calls, Lorence investigates Boileau's maturation as a legislator and skilled practitioner of independent bloc politics. Also significant is the study's depiction of the political climate during the depression. Boileau's ideas and actions were rooted in a fierce individualism that expressed itself in support for farmers, workers, and small businessmen. Consequently, he balked at the political centralization evident in New Deal liberalism, even as he supported much of the Roosevelt program. Clearly written and w
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Lorence traces the political career of Gerald J. Boileau, a prominent Wisconsin Progressive who served in the House of Representatives from 1930 to 1938, and also illuminates the promise and ultimate failure of the liberal Left in the 1930s. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826209184
  • Publisher: University of Missouri Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/1993
  • Pages: 344

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