LBJ's Neglected Legacy
During the five full years of his presidency (1964–1968), Lyndon Johnson initiated a breathtaking array of domestic policies and programs, including such landmarks as the Civil Rights Act, Head Start, Food Stamps, Medicare and Medicaid, the Immigration Reform Act, the Water Quality Act, the Voting Rights Act, Social Security reform, and Fair Housing. These and other "Great Society" programs reformed the federal government, reshaped intergovernmental relations, extended the federal government's role into new public policy arenas, and redefined federally protected rights of individuals to engage in the public sphere. Indeed, to a remarkable but largely unnoticed degree,Johnson's domestic agenda continues to shape and influence current debates on major issues such as immigration, health care, higher education funding, voting rights, and clean water, even though many of his specific policies and programs have been modified or, in some cases, dismantled since his presidency.
LBJ's Neglected Legacy examines the domestic policy achievements of one of America's most effective, albeit controversial, leaders. Leading contributors from the fields of history, public administration, economics, environmental engineering, sociology, and urban planning examine twelve of LBJ's key domestic accomplishments in the areas of citizenship and immigration, social and economic policy, science and technology, and public management. Their findings illustrate the enduring legacy of Johnson's determination and skill in taking advantage of overwhelming political support in the early years of his presidency to push through an extremely ambitious and innovative legislative agenda, and emphasize the extraordinary range and extent of LBJ's influence on American public policy and administration.