President Lyndon B. Johnson‘s legacy has been a topic in political circles of late, with the 50th anniversaries of the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the War On Poverty occurring this year. During LBJ’s time in office, major policies that changed the fortunes of working class Black people nationwide were pushed through.
The aforementioned Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 would be considered by most historians to be the most significant measures passed as it relates to Black Americans, but other progressive legislation happened under LBJ’s rule as well. Programs such as Headstart, education reform, Medicare, Medicaid, immigration reform, and much more were all part of LBJ’s “Great Society” plans.
LBJ split with conservatives and Republicans during this period, many of whom shunned his embrace of the role of “big government” in society.