SAT Subject US History Practice Question 933: Answer and Explanation
14. The Mugwumps were Republican leaders who left the Republican Party in 1884 and supported the Democratic Party because they were
A. angry with the Republican Party for not taking a stand against the spread of Jim Crow policies in the Southern states.
B. offered cabinet positions if the Democrat Grover Cleveland won the presidential election.
C. disappointed with the Republican presidential candidate's history of corruption.
D. weary of the Republican Party's opposition to immigration.
E. disgusted with the violence that had been done to the Native Americans of the Great Plains.
Correct Answer: C
The Mugwumps were reformers in the Republican Party who believed in good government. They were disappointed that the party had nominated James Blaine, who had accepted stocks from railroad executives in exchange for political favors when he was Speaker of the House. The Mugwumps decided to support the Democratic candidate in 1884, Grover Cleveland. Some Americans were disappointed that the Republicans had abandoned African Americans in the South (A), but this was not a Mugwump issue. Mugwumps did not receive, nor apparently had they been offered, cabinet positions (C) in the Cleveland administration. The Republicans tended to be more anti-immigrant in the late 19th century, but the Mugwumps didn't
seem to mind. Few people or groups opposed U.S. policies in regard to Native Americans in the late 1800s (E); the Mugwumps did not address this issue.