National Constitution CenterCenturies of Citizenship: A Constitutional Timeline Exhibit
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1931-1946: We meet crisis in the Depression, and again in World War II

January 16, 1933
A “New Deal” transforms American government

Rural electrification poster

“I am prepared under my constitutional duty to recommend the measures that a stricken nation in the midst of a stricken world may require.”
– Franklin D. Roosevelt

Washington has been a whirlwind of activity for the past hundred days, as our new president, Franklin D. Roosevelt, pushes his “New Deal” to revive a devastated economy.

Taking the lead in framing laws, he’s steered 15 major new measures through Congress to:

· end the banking crisis
· aid troubled farmers and regulate crop production
· set up a national business planning board
· create new government agencies to employ a million workers planting trees, fixing roads and building hospitals, schools and dams.

Some critics, appalled at this new federal role in the economy, protest that these new bureaucracies aren’t mentioned anywhere in the Constitution.

But with 13 million people out of work, most of us are relieved to see the federal government take action.

Read about it in the New York times

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