How did Eisenhower approach to roll back the New Deal reflect what he called the “middle way?”

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I tend to think that President Eisenhower understood that the current conditions were not ones that necessitated the dominance and cult of personality that were such a part of both Truman and Roosevelt.  Eisenhower recognized that the rollback of the New Deal would bring back the center in government.  This was something of vital importance to President Eisenhower.  He believed that pursuing the element at the ideological center is where modern political success resided.  This centrism is part of "the middle way" that was a part of his leadership and his political administrations.  President Eisenhower did not necessarily abolish federal government's role in domestic and international affairs.  This could be seen in the development of highways and the sending of federal troops to areas of the South hostile to change in racial practices.  Yet, Eisenhower understood that the only possible way to achieve the centrist approach that was such a part of both he and his political leadership required that he seek "the middle way" in both policy and political practice.  In this, the need to roll back elements of the New Deal became essential.


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