Blaine of Maine , was implicated in several financial scandals, while Cleveland was involved in a paternity case in which admitted that he had paid child support in to a woman who claimed he was the father of her child. In spite of the scandal, Cleveland won the election with the support of the Mugwumps, Republicans who considered Blaine corrupt.
Once in office, Cleveland continued the policy of his predecessor, Chester Arthur , in basing political appointments on merit rather than party affiliation. He tried to reduce government spending, using the veto more often than any other president up to that point.
Cleveland was a noninterventionist in foreign policy and fought to have protective tariffs lowered. Although Cleveland was not the first president to marry while in office, he is the only one who had the ceremony in the White House.
At age 21, Frances became the youngest first lady in U. The Clevelands would go on to have five children. The tariff issue came back to haunt Cleveland in the presidential election of Senator Benjamin Harrison of Indiana won the election, in large part because of heavy turnout by voters in the industrial states of the Northeast who saw their jobs threatened by lower tariffs. Cleveland even lost his home state of New York in that election.
He returned to New York City and took a position in a law firm for the next four years. Unlike the campaign of , the presidential campaign of was quiet and restrained. President Harrison, whose wife, Caroline Harrison , was dying of tuberculosis, did not campaign personally, and Cleveland followed suit. Cleveland won the election, in part because voters had changed their minds about high tariffs and also because Tammany Hall decided to throw its support behind him. The Panic of began with a railroad bankruptcy in February , followed rapidly by bank failures, a nationwide credit crisis, a stock market crash and the failures of three more railroads.
Unemployment rose to 19 percent, and a series of strikes crippled the coal and transportation industries in The American economy did not recover until , when the Klondike gold rush in the Yukon touched off a decade of rapid growth. Cleveland was inconsistent in his social views. On the one hand, he opposed discrimination against Chinese immigrants in the West.
On the other hand, he did not support equality for African Americans or voting rights for women, and he thought Native Americans should assimilate into mainstream society as quickly as possible rather than preserve their own cultures. He also became unpopular with organized labor when he used federal troops to crush the Pullman railroad strike in Cleveland was an honest and hard-working president but he is criticized for being unimaginative and having no overarching vision for American society.
Opposed to using legislation to bring about social change, he is best known for strengthening the executive branch of the federal government in relation to Congress.
By the fall of , Cleveland had become unpopular with some factions in his own party. Other Democrats, however, wanted him to run for a third term, as there was no term limit for presidents at that time.
Cleveland declined, and former U. Representative William Jennings Bryan of Nebraska won the nomination. Stephen Grover Cleveland March 18, — June 24, was an American politician and lawyer who was the 22nd and 24th President of the United States , the only president in American history to serve two non-consecutive terms in office — and — Cleveland was the leader of the pro-business Bourbon Democrats who opposed high tariffs , Free Silver , inflation, imperialism , and subsidies to business, farmers, or veterans on libertarian philosophical grounds.
His crusade for political reform and fiscal conservatism made him an icon for American conservatives of the era. As a reformer, Cleveland had such prestige that the like-minded wing of the Republican Party, called " Mugwumps ", largely bolted the GOP presidential ticket and swung to his support in the election. As his second administration began, disaster hit the nation when the Panic of produced a severe national depression, which Cleveland was unable to reverse.
It ruined his Democratic Party, opening the way for a Republican landslide in and for the agrarian and silverite seizure of the Democratic Party in Cleveland was a formidable policymaker, and he also drew corresponding criticism.
His intervention in the Pullman Strike of to keep the railroads moving angered labor unions nationwide in addition to the party in Illinois; his support of the gold standard and opposition to Free Silver alienated the agrarian wing of the Democratic Party.
Biographer Allan Nevins wrote, "[I]n Grover Cleveland, the greatness lies in typical rather than unusual qualities. He had no endowments that thousands of men do not have. He possessed honesty, courage, firmness, independence, and common sense. But he possessed them to a degree other men do not. Cleveland, the fifth of nine children, was named Stephen Grover in honor of the first pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Caldwell, where his father was pastor at the time. He became known as Grover in his adult life.
Financial conditions forced him to remove Grover from school into a two-year mercantile apprenticeship in Fayetteville. The experience was valuable and brief, and the living conditions quite austere. Grover returned to Clinton and his schooling at the completion of the apprentice contract.
Cleveland received his elementary education at the Fayetteville Academy and the Clinton Liberal Academy. He returned home to Holland Patent at the end of , where an elder in his church offered to pay for his college education if he would promise to become a minister.
Cleveland declined, and in he decided to move west. Allen , gave him a clerical job. Cleveland worked for the Rogers firm for three years, then left in to start his own practice. As a lawyer, Cleveland became known for his single-minded concentration and dedication to hard work.
From his earliest involvement in politics, Cleveland aligned with the Democratic Party. Bass , the Republican nominee. Cleveland's service as sheriff was unremarkable; biographer Rexford Tugwell described the time in office as a waste for Cleveland politically. Cleveland was aware of graft in the sheriff's office during his tenure and chose not to confront it. After his term as sheriff ended, Cleveland returned to his law practice, opening a firm with his friends Lyman K.
Bass and Wilson S. As biographer Allan Nevins wrote, "Probably no man in the country, on March 4, , had less thought than this limited, simple, sturdy attorney of Buffalo that four years later he would be standing in Washington and taking the oath as President of the United States. It was during this period that Cleveland began a relationship with a widow, Maria Crofts Halpin.
She accused him of raping her. He had her institutionalized and her child taken away and raised by his friends. The illegitimate child became a campaign issue for the GOP in his first presidential campaign. In the s, the municipal government in Buffalo had grown increasingly corrupt, with Democratic and Republican political machines cooperating to share the spoils of political office.
Cleveland's term as mayor was spent fighting the entrenched interests of the party machines. His veto message said, "I regard it as the culmination of a most bare-faced, impudent, and shameless scheme to betray the interests of the people, and to worse than squander the public money.
New York Democratic party officials began to consider Cleveland a possible nominee for governor. Flower and Henry W. Their factions deadlocked, and the convention could not agree on a nominee. Cleveland brought his opposition to needless spending to the governor's office; he promptly sent the legislature eight vetos in his first two months in office.
Cleveland's defiance of political corruption won him popular acclaim, and the enmity of the influential Tammany Hall organization in New York City. Blaine of Maine for president on the fourth ballot. Blaine's nomination alienated many Republicans who viewed Blaine as ambitious and immoral. Among the Democrats, Samuel J. Tilden was the initial front-runner, having been the party's nominee in the contested election of Bayard of Delaware , Allen G. Thurman of Ohio , Samuel Freeman Miller of Iowa , and Benjamin Butler of Massachusetts also had considerable followings, along with various favorite sons.
Bayard had spoken in favor of secession in , making him unacceptable to Northerners; Butler, conversely, was reviled throughout the South for his actions during the Civil War ; Thurman was generally well liked, but was growing old and infirm, and his views on the silver question were uncertain. Hendricks of Indiana was selected as his running mate. Corruption in politics was the central issue in ; indeed, Blaine had over the span of his career been involved in several questionable deals.
Hudson created Cleveland's contextual campaign slogan "A public office is a public trust. The campaign focused on the candidates' moral standards, as each side cast aspersions on their opponents. Cleveland's supporters rehashed the old allegations that Blaine had corruptly influenced legislation in favor of the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railroad and the Union Pacific Railway , later profiting on the sale of bonds he owned in both companies. Blaine, the continental liar from the state of Maine, 'Burn this letter!
Regarding Cleveland, commentator Jeff Jacoby notes that, "Not since George Washington had a candidate for President been so renowned for his rectitude. Aided by the sermons of Reverend George H.
Ball, a minister from Buffalo, they made public the allegation that Cleveland had fathered an illegitimate child while he was a lawyer there,  and their rallies soon included the chant "Ma, Ma, where's my Pa?
Burchard , gave a speech pivotal for the Democrats, denouncing them as the party of "Rum, Romanism , and Rebellion.
They also blistered Blaine for attending a banquet with some of New York City's wealthiest men. After the votes were counted, Cleveland narrowly won all four of the swing states, including New York by votes. Soon after taking office, Cleveland was faced with the task of filling all the government jobs for which the president had the power of appointment. These jobs were typically filled under the spoils system , but Cleveland announced that he would not fire any Republican who was doing his job well, and would not appoint anyone solely on the basis of party service.
Cleveland also reformed other parts of the government. In , he signed an act creating the Interstate Commerce Commission. Whitney undertook to modernize the navy and canceled construction contracts that had resulted in inferior ships. Lamar charged that the rights of way for this land must be returned to the public because the railroads failed to extend their lines according to agreements. Cleveland was the first Democratic President subject to the Tenure of Office Act which originated in ; the act purported to require the Senate to approve the dismissal of any presidential appointee who was originally subject to its advice and consent.
Cleveland objected to the act in principle and his steadfast refusal to abide by it prompted its fall into disfavor and led to its ultimate repeal in Cleveland faced a Republican Senate and often resorted to using his veto powers.
In his veto message, he espoused a theory of limited government:. I can find no warrant for such an appropriation in the Constitution, and I do not believe that the power and duty of the general government ought to be extended to the relief of individual suffering which is in no manner properly related to the public service or benefit.
A prevalent tendency to disregard the limited mission of this power and duty should, I think, be steadfastly resisted, to the end that the lesson should be constantly enforced that, though the people support the government, the government should not support the people. The friendliness and charity of our countrymen can always be relied upon to relieve their fellow-citizens in misfortune.
This has been repeatedly and quite lately demonstrated. Federal aid in such cases encourages the expectation of paternal care on the part of the government and weakens the sturdiness of our national character, while it prevents the indulgence among our people of that kindly sentiment and conduct which strengthens the bonds of a common brotherhood.
One of the most volatile issues of the s was whether the currency should be backed by gold and silver , or by gold alone. Cleveland and Treasury Secretary Daniel Manning stood firmly on the side of the gold standard, and tried to reduce the amount of silver that the government was required to coin under the Bland-Allison Act of Bland , introduced a bill in that would require the government to coin unlimited amounts of silver, inflating the then-deflating currency.
Another contentious financial issue at the time was the protective tariff. While it had not been a central point in his campaign, Cleveland's opinion on the tariff was that of most Democrats: In , a bill to reduce the tariff was narrowly defeated in the House.
Randall , believed that American industries would fail without high tariffs, and they continued to fight reform efforts. Dispute over the tariff persisted into the presidential election. Cleveland was a committed non-interventionist who had campaigned in opposition to expansion and imperialism. He refused to promote the previous administration's Nicaragua canal treaty, and generally was less of an expansionist in foreign relations.
Bayard , negotiated with Joseph Chamberlain of the United Kingdom over fishing rights in the waters off Canada, and struck a conciliatory note, despite the opposition of New England 's Republican Senators. Cleveland's military policy emphasized self-defense and modernization.
Endicott to recommend a new coastal fortification system for the United States. Most of the Board's recommendations were implemented, and by , 27 locations were defended by over 70 forts. Endicott also proposed to Congress a system of examinations for Army officer promotions.
Although completion of the four steel-hulled warships begun under the previous administration was delayed due to a corruption investigation and subsequent bankruptcy of their building yard, these ships were completed in a timely manner in naval shipyards once the investigation was over.
These ships included the "second-class battleships " Maine and Texas , designed to match modern armored ships recently acquired by South American countries from Europe, such as the Brazilian battleship Riachuelo. Cleveland, like a growing number of Northerners and nearly all white Southerners saw Reconstruction as a failed experiment, and was reluctant to use federal power to enforce the 15th Amendment of the U. Constitution , which guaranteed voting rights to African Americans.
Although Cleveland had condemned the "outrages" against Chinese immigrants, he believed that Chinese immigrants were unwilling to assimilate into white society. Cleveland viewed Native Americans as wards of the state , saying in his first inaugural address that "[t]his guardianship involves, on our part, efforts for the improvement of their condition and enforcement of their rights.
It ultimately weakened the tribal governments and allowed individual Indians to sell land and keep the money. In the month before Cleveland's inauguration, President Arthur opened four million acres of Winnebago and Crow Creek Indian lands in the Dakota Territory to white settlement by executive order. Army, to investigate the matter. Cleveland entered the White House as a bachelor, and his sister Rose Cleveland joined him, to act as hostess for the first two years of his administration.
In the daughter of Cleveland's friend Oscar Folsom visited him in Washington. When she returned to school, President Cleveland received her mother's permission to correspond with her, and they were soon engaged to be married. This marriage was unusual, since Cleveland was the executor of Oscar Folsom's estate and had supervised Frances's upbringing after her father's death; nevertheless, the public took no exception to the match.
The Clevelands had five children: Ruth — , Esther — , Marion — , Richard — , and Francis Grover — British philosopher Philippa Foot was their granddaughter.
During his first term, Cleveland successfully nominated two justices to the Supreme Court of the United States. The first, Lucius Q. While Lamar had been well liked as a Senator, his service under the Confederacy two decades earlier caused many Republicans to vote against him.
Lamar's nomination was confirmed by the narrow margin of 32 to He had previously declined Cleveland's nomination to the Civil Service Commission , preferring his Chicago law practice. The Senate Judiciary Committee spent several months examining the little-known nominee, before the Senate confirmed the nomination 41 to Cleveland nominated 41 lower federal court judges in addition to his four Supreme Court justices. These included two judges to the United States circuit courts , nine judges to the United States Courts of Appeals , and 30 judges to the United States district courts.
Because Cleveland served terms both before and after Congress eliminated the circuit courts in favor of the Courts of Appeals, he is one of only two presidents to have appointed judges to both bodies. He angered the railroads by ordering an investigation of western lands they held by Government grant. He forced them to return 81,, acres. He also signed the Interstate Commerce Act, the first law attempting Federal regulation of the railroads.
In December he called on Congress to reduce high protective tariffs. Told that he had given Republicans an effective issue for the campaign of , he retorted, "What is the use of being elected or re-elected unless you stand for something? Elected again in , Cleveland faced an acute depression. He dealt directly with the Treasury crisis rather than with business failures, farm mortgage foreclosures, and unemployment.
He obtained repeal of the mildly inflationary Sherman Silver Purchase Act and, with the aid of Wall Street, maintained the Treasury's gold reserve. When railroad strikers in Chicago violated an injunction, Cleveland sent Federal troops to enforce it.
Stephen Grover Cleveland (March 18, – June 24, ) was an American politician and lawyer who was the 22nd and 24th President of the United States, the only president in American history to serve two non-consecutive terms in office (– and –).
Stephen Grover Cleveland was born in Caldwell, New Jersey, on March 18, He was the fifth of nine children of Richard Falley Cleveland (), a Presbyterian minister, and Anne Neal Cleveland ().
The First Democrat elected after the Civil War, Grover Cleveland was the only President to leave the White House and return for a second term four years later. One of nine children of a Presbyterian minister, Cleveland was born in New Jersey in Grover Cleveland of New York, was in many respects the antithesis of Blaine. He was a relative newcomer to politics. He was a relative newcomer to politics. He had been elected mayor of Buffalo in and governor of New York in
Watch video · Grover Cleveland, born March 18, , was a tough opponent of political corruption who fiercely guarded the integrity of the offices in which he served. He lost a second term as incumbent but won back the presidency four years later. Stephen Grover Cleveland fell into politics without really trying. In , local businessmen asked Cleveland, then a young lawyer, to run for mayor of Buffalo, New York. He agreed and won the Democratic nomination and the election. As mayor, Cleveland exposed city .