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Nixon, Reagan and the New Right

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Part of the Studies in Contemporary History book series (SCH)


For those caught up in the civil rights movement, 1968 seemed to be the year in which the rule of the old elites was coming to an end. In Northern Ireland, France, Germany and Japan students seemed to be in the vanguard of a major revolution that would sweep away the old liberal and conservative establishments. Johnson had refused to seek re-election, the Democratic candidate and liberal Vice President Hubert Humphrey campaigned on the ‘politics of joy’ and the voice of the new conservatism was the deeply distrusted former Vice President, Richard M. Nixon. Humphrey had to rely on LBJ and the boss of Chicago, Mayor Richard Daley, at the Democratic convention in Chicago. Despite the death of Robert Kennedy, the first senator to challenge LBJ, Eugene McCarthy of Minnesota, was still in the nomination race and after Robert Kennedy’s murder in Los Angeles his popularity was rising. But he failed to win over the Kennedy supporters and behaved more as a spectator of events rather than trying to shape and mould them and as a result many delegates supported the anti-war senator from South Dakota, George McGovern.

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© 1997 William T. Martin Riches

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Riches, W.T.M. (1997). Nixon, Reagan and the New Right. In: The Civil Rights Movement. Studies in Contemporary History. Palgrave, London.

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  • Publisher Name: Palgrave, London

  • Print ISBN: 978-0-333-61100-5

  • Online ISBN: 978-1-349-25880-2

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