In what ways was the Bull Moose party different from the Republican Party of its time?
The Bull Moose, or "Progressive" Party is sometimes held up as an example of a "bolter" party, i.e., one that leaves a major party to field candidates on its own. The Bull Moose Party was formed when Theodore Roosevelt left the Republicans in advance of the 1912 presidential election. Essentially, he claimed that William Howard Taft, the Republican nominee, had backtracked on the Progressive agenda that Roosevelt had brought to the White House. The Bull Moose Party thus differed from the Republicans in that they embraced far more reforms than the more conservative (but not entirely reform-averse) Republicans under Taft. Roosevelt's platform, often called the "New Nationalism," was for its time one of the more radical political positions ever taken by a Presidential candidate. It called for strict regulation of the trusts, woman suffrage, outlawing child labor, an eight-hour workday, currency reform, an income tax, and for transparency in investments, among many other initiatives. Most of these reforms were anathema to the Republicans, who embraced only limited regulations on the economy.
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