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The Presidencies of James A. Garfield and Chester A. Arthur (American Presidency Series) Hardcover – April 17, 1981
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"Expertly summarizes the excellent studies of late nineteenth-century politics and diplomacy published in recent years. -- American Historical Review
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James A. Garfield was far from everyone’s first choice as the Republican’s presidential nominee in the 1880 election. “The presidential candidate was seldom chosen for firmness or executive grasp or for clarity of national vision,” writes Doenecke, “but rather because he could appeal to conflicting voting blocs.” The Republican delegates had a hard time deciding who that would be. It wasn’t until the 34th ballot that Garfield received his party’s nomination. His running mate—Chester A. Arthur—was chosen to appease an unhappy faction known as “the Salwarts.Read more ›
On the international front, the author leaves the impression that these presidents did not drive the bus of foreign policy, but rather left it up to their Secretaries of State: first the fullback-like diplomacy of James G. Blaine (for whom the goal line was his electoral aspirations in the 1884 contest), and later the more refined and better considered policies of Frederick T. Frelinghuysen. The author gives us a complete accounting of this administration's diplomatic trials and tribulations on many fronts internationally, including South America, Mexico, China, Korea, Cuba, Ireland, Madagascar, and the Congo, all the while playing alternate games of bluff poker and chess with the great European powers.Read more ›