Turning His Back

 

After campaigning for black votes in 1904, a move that many prejudiced whites lampooned, Roosevelt did not live up to the trust those voters placed in him.

 Roosevelt’s second term produced greater cause for concern for African Americans as Roosevelt retreated from earlier, though modest, demonstrations of commitment. In The Republican Party and Black America historian Richard B. Sherman argues that in his second term Roosevelt "made no more dramatic gestures on behalf of [African-American] rights, and if anything, he increased his efforts to win the confidence of the white South. Before long the rather inflated reputation he enjoyed among many blacks markedly declined and was replaced by growing distrust and hostility." (52) C. Vann Woodward and other historians have pointed to Roosevelt’s Southern tour, in which he refused to comment on race relations or to stand up against Jim Crow laws, as an event that generated much African-American distrust of him.

Next to the Brownsville Controversy

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