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How do JFK and LBJ compare as Presidents?

The 1960's where a very turbulent period. America needed leaders who could react to enormous public pressure and meet the challenges of a nation moving towards a new modern era. Presidents Kennedy and Johnson had to deal with civil rights issues, the cold war, the Vietnam and the social upheaval of the turbulent sixties. Kennedy has a wonderful reputation, but was he really the better President?

What types of issues did Kennedy and Johnson have to deal with in the sixties?

1. Cold War

2. Civil Rights protests, riots

3. Vietnam

4. Social upheaval - drug culture, rebellion, rock and roll.

Kennedy - The New Freedom

Johnson - The Great Society

1. Peace Corps

2. Space Program

3. Housing Act of 1961

4. Passage of the 24th amendment

5. Stewardship through the cold war (Berlion Aqirlift, Cuban Missle Crisis)

6. Great public persona and charisma, great control of the media - first lady, Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy and he were "American royalty."

7. Bay of Pigs

8. No real Civil Rights laws passed.

1. Civil Rights Act of 1964

2. The War on Poverty

  • Economic Opportunity Act created the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO)
  • Job Corps
  • VISTA - Volunteers in Service to America
  • 90 out of 115 recommendations approved in 1965 (arm twister) Appalachian Redevelopment Act
  • Project Head Start

3. 1965 Voting Rights Act

4. Vietnam


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