Creating Conflagration Barry Goldwater and The Republican Party

Jonathan M. Schoenwald

in A Time for Choosing

Published in print August 2002 | ISBN: 9780195157260
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199849390 | DOI:
Creating Conflagration Barry Goldwater and The Republican Party

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Post-World War II conservative ideology, and the vigorous grassroots effort on the part of the radical Right could be interpreted in more than one way. The men who drafted Barry Goldwater saw the signs as pointing to a groundswell that clamored for an unswervingly conservative candidate. They believed that not only was the conservative equivalent of the New Deal Coalition beginning to congeal but that such an alliance would envelop their liberal and moderate cousins in the GOP. Goldwater and L. Brent Bozell published The Conscience of a Conservative, which inspired thousands of Americans to join the still-young conservative movement. The conservative political culture, and the problems of extremism are shown. A combination of forces helped assure that Goldwater could not be elected. In the 1964 election, Republicans faced a strong economy, a relatively small war that seemed to be under control, a popular president, and a public that did not want a third leader in fourteen months. And within a couple of years of Goldwater's defeat, two names appeared: William F. Buckley, Jr. and Ronald Reagan.

Keywords: Barry Goldwater; Republican Party; William F. Buckley, Jr.; Ronald Reagan; The Conscience of a Conservative

Chapter.  18028 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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