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Hayes, Rutherford (Administration)

Rutherford Hayes was one of the nation’s most well-rounded presidents. Hayes graduated from Harvard Law School, was a renowned attorney in the courtroom, and was injured as a general in the Civil War. Before he became president, Hayes had already demonstrated his potential to be a social reformer. Hayes volunteered legal services for fugitive slaves, pushed for equal rights, espoused prison reform, sought funding for universal education, advocated for better institutional support for orphans and the mentally handicapped, and pursued universal suffrage. As governor of Ohio, he instituted a merit system for bureaucratic hiring, and worked to minimize state-owned debt. All of these qualities led to the Republicans wanting Hayes to be their presidential nominee; they knew that he would push a reform agenda.

A Republican, ...

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