What did the New Deal offer to the diverse elements of the New Deal coalition?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The New Deal coalition was a coalition of various groups that all started to support the Democratic Party during the New Deal.  The coalition included many different groups and came to dominate American politics for the next few decades.

As the link below says, the New Deal coalition involved many different groups:

An interesting group of Americans supported Roosevelt: It was the first presidential election in which the Democratic candidate won a majority of black Americans' votes. Support also came from other minorities and from laborers, Catholics, Jews, and big-city political organizations. The South also voted Democratic.

When thinking about what the New Deal gave to each of these groups, please note that the groups overlap to a great extent.  For example, Catholics, Jews, and big-city political organizations cannot be separated from the category of "laborers" (also called labor unions in many texts).  So what the unions got was also a benefit to the other groups.

Some things that the groups got include:

  • Labor unions got more in the way of collective bargaining rights and protections.
  • Farmers got programs that helped to guarantee them a basic level of income.
  • The South (many of whom were farmers, of course) got the TVA, which brought electricity and flood control.
  • The poor (many of who were in the South, or were black, or were in the big cities of the North) got government jobs in things like the WPA or the CCC.  They also got income support in some cases.

Overall, then, all of these groups benefitted from the New Deal programs because these programs helped revive the economy as a whole.

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