Lyndon B. Johnson



-November 22, 1963, President Kennedy was shot and killed as he was riding in an open limousine in Dallas, Texas.

-The alleged gunman Le Harvey Oswald, was shot and killed by the avenger Jack Ruby.

-Johnson was sworn into office, retaining most of Kennedy's cabinet.


-second election(1964):

  • Democrats nominated LBJ
  • The Republicans ran Senator Barry Goldwater.
  • Goldwater attacked the federal income tax, the Social Security System, the Tennessee Valley Authority, civil rights legislation, the nuclear test-ban treaty, and the Great Society.
  • LBJ overwhelmingly won the election


-------------------------------------Civil Rights-------------------------------

Civil Rights Act of 1964

  • LBJ passed this in 1964
  • Prohibited discrimination of African Americans in employment voting, or public accommodations
  • no discrimination against race, color, sex, religion, or national origin.

Voting Rights Act of 1965

  • 1965
  • guaranteed the right to vote to all Americans
  • allowed the federal government to intervene in order to ensure that minorities could vote

Affirmative Action-

policy designed to redress past discrimination against women and minority groups through measures to improve their economic and educational opportunities

24th amendment-

  • Intimidation, literacy tests, and poll taxes continued to bar blacks from voting

  • 1964- Black movement in the South sought to open up the polling booths

  • 24th amendment- ratified in January of 1964, abolished the poll tax in federal elections

-Johnson's spending on the Vietnam War and his Great Society also diminished the U.S. Treasury, giving too much money to the hands of the private sector


Gulf of Tonkin-

-August 1964, two U.S. destroyers stationed in the Gulf of Tonkin in Vietnam radioed that they had been fired upon by North Vietnamese forces.

-Tonkin Gulf Resolution-lawmakers handed over war-declaring powers to the president and essentially gave the president a blank check to use further force in Southeast Asia. This way Johnson could do whatever he needed to maintain peace

- Vietnam War

  • February 1965, Viet Cong guerrillas attacked an American air base at Pleiku, South Vietnam, prompting Johnson to send retaliatory bomb raids and, for the first time, order attacking U.S. troops to land.
  • March 1965, "Operation Rolling Thunder" full operation - regular full-scale bombing attacks against North Vietnam
  • By 1968, Johnson had stationed 500,000+ troops in Southeast Asia, and the annual cost for the war was exceeding $30 billion.
  • January 1968, the Viet Cong attacked 27 key South Vietnamese cities
  • Tet Offensive ended in a military defeat for the VC, but it caused the American public to demand an immediate end to the war.
  • 1967, Johnson ordered the CIA to spy on domestic antiwar activists

    He also encouraged the FBI to turn their counterinteligence program (code-named "Cointelpro,") against the peace movement.

  • March 31, 1968, President Johnson said in an address to the public that he would freeze the number of american troops and gradually shift responsibilities of the war to South Vietnam and bombing would scale down
  • Most longest and unpopular foreign war in American History

-War on Poverty

  • Lyndon Johnson declared war on poverty in his 1964 State of the Union address.

-“Great Society”-

  • democratic domestic reform program including medicare, medicare, and civil rights bills
  • required a lot of funds
  • aid to education
  • medical care for the elderly and poor (medicare medicaid respectively)
  • immigration reform- Johnson eliminated the immigration law of 1924 and douled the quota for each country
  • new voting rights bill
  • educational aid to students


-Served 2 terms

"Doing what's right isn't the problem. It is knowing what's right."