Legislative Leader

The role of the president as a legislative leader is to influence legislation, including the passing and vetoing of laws.  Some legislative acts of Eisenhower’s include:

1. Interstate highway system was created

2. NASA was created

3. The Civil Rights Act of 1957 was passed during his presidency.  Eisenhower also had to deal with segreation issues such as those in Little Rock, Arkansas. Although Eisenhower passed the Civil Rights Act, he was not in favor of dealing with or supporting issues on segregation.  He did not enforce the Supreme court’s ruling in Brown v. Board of education.  However, he did send troops to Little Rock, Arkansas when mobs of people tried to oppose the desegregation of schools. (Biography: Dwight Eisenhower).

Eisenhower overlooking the civil rights Bill

(Source: Civil Rights Act Turns 50)

4. On April 1, 1983, the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare was created.

5. On May 22, 1953, Eisenhower signed the Submerged Land Act, which gave the federal government ownership of the first 3 miles of a state’s coastal land.

6. Eisenhower passed the Refugee Relief Act in 1953.  This bill granted 200,000 nonquota visas to refugees unable to return to their homes in communist countries (Refugee Relief Act- united States).

7. On June 29 1956, Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway Act, which provided federal funding for interstate highway systems and transportation

8. On August 1 1956, the Social Security Act was passed

9. Alaska and Hawaii became the 49th and 50th states.

10. Eisenhower signed the Landrum-Griffin Act in 1959.  This act established rights of union members and labor organizations.

(Sources 4-10: American President)

Eisenhower was very successful as a legislative leader.  Not only did he pass much legislation troughout his term, but he dealt with many important issues of the time, such as civil rights.  He took it upon himself to influence legislation, and for that reason his performance as legislative leader was very successful.


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