Chapter 3: A "Return to Normalcy"
Senator Warren G Harding – Return to Normalcy Speech
Few Presidents in America are as frequently maligned as the hapless Warren Harding. But for all his faults as a President, in the 1920 race for the White House, Harding delivered one of the most effective and timely campaign speeches in American history. Couched in the weary rhetoric, soaring platitudes, suspect analogies, meandering phrases and clunky alliterations that he cherished, Harding’s speech in May 1920, calling for a return to “normalcy” after the tumult of World War I and the disruptive social and economic changes associated with progressivism would resonate with the American people and lead Harding to one of the largest popular vote victories in American history. Though he would die in office Harding’s election would signal a decade-long move away from the excesses of progressivism and a return to more traditional, conservative government in America.