NYC -- 1930s Politics in Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Fiorello LaGuardia was a New Deal Republican, a man who supported President Franklin Roosevelt and who used that support to help change New York City, to cut off patronage from the Tammany system, and to revitalize New York City, restore public faith, unify the transit system, built low-cost public housing, playgrounds and parks; put money into airports, reorganized the police force, and reestablished the idea of merit employment in place of patronage jobs. In short, in his domineering and authoritarian three terms, he literally turned the New York political machine on its head; used his connections with the White House to revamp New York City in the midst of the Depression, and gave New York City a chance to become a modern, world-class city. While criticized for being heavy-handed, his reforms were carefully orchestrated to focus on those areas that had been hardest hit by the economic woes of the times, as well as corruption from the Wards. Unfortunately, when Roosevelt had to direct money towards the war effort, LaGuardia lost some of his political capital (Brodsky).

Clearly, LaGuardia's change of focus was necessary in order to limit and help bring down the corruption of Tammany. He was
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the right person for the right time; it is unlikely that any political leader would be allowed his span of control in the contemporary era. However, the reforms that he instituted; particularly those of completely revamping the police and governing bureaucracy of the city, along with an understanding that public works and new blood politics could take hold, forced the Tammany machine to its knees. Subsequent reformers have also taken on New York City's problems in a similar manner, and even though there were dark days of crime and inner-city corruption during the 1970s and early 1980s, reform minded Mayors like Edward Koch and Rudolph Giuliani continued to help transform New York in a global urban showcase (Roberts).

Works Cited

Allen, O. The Tiger: The Rise and Fall of Tammany Hall. Reading, MA: Addison Wesley, 1993.

Berg, B. New York City Politics: Governing Gotham. Piscataway, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2007.

Brodsky, A. The Great Mayor: Fiorello La Gudardia and the Making of the City of New York. New York: St. Martin's, 2003.

Burrows. E / amd Wallace, M. Gotham: A History of New York City. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

Roberts, S. "The Guiliani Years: La Guardia's Legacy is Formidable, but it may be surpassed." 31 December 2001. The New York…

Sources Used in Documents:

Works Cited

Allen, O. The Tiger: The Rise and Fall of Tammany Hall. Reading, MA: Addison Wesley, 1993.

Berg, B. New York City Politics: Governing Gotham. Piscataway, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2007.

Brodsky, A. The Great Mayor: Fiorello La Gudardia and the Making of the City of New York. New York: St. Martin's, 2003.

Burrows. E / amd Wallace, M. Gotham: A History of New York City. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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