SAT Subject US History Practice Question 899: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 899

70. In his first year in office, President Ronald Reagan

A. initiated a famous 100 days of intense legislative activity.
B. began his program of trading arms for hostages.
C. fired air traffic controllers who refused to end their strike for shorter hours and higher pay.
D. invaded Iran to force the return of American hostages.
E. launched an invasion of Cuba.

Correct Answer: C


In a test of wills in August 1981, Reagan threatened, then fired air traffic controllers and broke their union, the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Association (PATCO). This action signaled an antiunion offensive, which produced a sharp reduction in union membership and the legalization of replacement workers during strikes. The 100 days (A) was the famous beginning of the New Deal in 1933 under Franklin Roosevelt. The trading of arms for hostages (B) did not occur in the first year of Reagan's term, and it has never been proved that he initiated it. He did not invade Iran (D). Carter tried that but failed. The hostages were released soon after Reagan took office. It was John Kennedy who launched an invasion of Cuba upon entering office (E); the Bay of Pigs invasion had been planned under the Eisenhower Administration.

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