Herbert Hoover's Presidency

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Herbert Hoover was President of the United States from 1929-1933. He won the election of 1928 by defeating Al Smith. Prior to becoming President, he was the Secretary of Commerce for the Republican presidencies of Harding and Coolidge.

Herbert Hoover believed in a laissez-faire economic philosophy. He believed the federal government should stay out of economic affairs and let events run their course. He believed businesses would do the right things to get the economy going again if the economy slowed down. President Hoover believed the economy goes through good cycles and bad cycles. Thus, when the Great Depression started, President Hoover believed things would work themselves out without government interference.

Unfortunately, this policy didn’t work as the depression worsened under President Hoover’s leadership. President Hoover reluctantly agreed to get the government more actively involved in ending the Great Depression. The National Credit Corporation formed to help troubled banks loan money. The Reconstruction Finance Corporation and the Emergency Relief and Construction Act tried to provide aid to businesses to create jobs. These actions weren’t enough to reverse the downward spiral, and President Hoover lost his reelection bid in 1932 to Franklin D. Roosevelt.

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