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McKinley, William (Administration)

William McKinley (1843–1901), the 25th president of the United States, is best remembered for increasing import tariffs and starting the Spanish-American War. He began a movement that ultimately enabled the United States to have a global economic reach. McKinley was born and raised in Ohio and served as a Union soldier in the Civil War before becoming a successful lawyer. He developed an interest in politics from an early age and served in numerous positions in which he quickly was identified as a rising star of the Republican Party.

A compassionate conservative, McKinley cared genuinely about the poor and felt they would benefit more than anyone else from a protectionist stance on tariffs. He always felt a special bond with the rural poor, who reflected the ...

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