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Carter was anti-labor ((just like Clinton and Obama) doing nothing to reverse the Taft-Hartley Act), and created (through Paul Volcker) a massive recession. His unpopularity and the efforts of organized labor got Kennedy to run against him. Kennedy was the last major effort of the New Deal Democrats and the New Deal coalition.

Economic policy-wise, Carter began the Reagan administration. More or less, Carter was Clinton is Obama.

fairleft

by fairleft (fairleftatyahoodotcom) on Wed Aug 18th, 2010 at 01:20:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In a nutshell, 'real' Democrats were damned angry at Volcker/Carter 'using unemployment to fight inflation'. Kennedy's 1980 Democratic Party convention speech:

Let us pledge that we will never misuse unemployment, high interest rates, and human misery as false weapons against inflation.

Let us pledge that employment will be the first priority of our economic policy.

Let us pledge that there will be security for all those who are now at work, and let us pledge that there will be jobs for all who are out of work; and we will not compromise on the issues of jobs.

These are not simplistic pledges. Simply put, they are the heart of our tradition, and they have been the soul of our party across the generations.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leonce-gaiter/ted-kennedys-best-highlig_b_103054.html

fairleft

by fairleft (fairleftatyahoodotcom) on Wed Aug 18th, 2010 at 01:24:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I wasn't implying he was a progressive,  Arguably no President has been a progressive since FDR.  However he was an awful lot less bad than the Nixon/Ford/Reagan Presidencies he interrupted. Within the framework of his times and power structures he operated within, he may have been almost as progressive as it was possible for a President to be - and even then he was beaten by a far out conservative - despite the advantages of incumbency.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Aug 18th, 2010 at 01:43:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Nixon was more liberal on economic policy than Carter. But, Nixon and Carter were both creatures of their times, carried along by what powerful elites thought was expedient at the time. So Nixon introduced wage and price controls to battle inflation, while Carter used unemployment to battle the same.

fairleft
by fairleft (fairleftatyahoodotcom) on Thu Aug 19th, 2010 at 10:48:28 AM EST
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