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The Political Machine In the late 19th century cities in America had been faced with numerous complications due to immigration Our government was inefficient and unstable and with increasing immigration a new system or power was a necessity for the continuous growth of our nation Cities were failing to remain in control as foreigners sought employment opportunities and places to stay The emergence of the political machine brought not only a new form of politics but also a bright path for new immigrants The political machine arose after the Civil War where it became the basis of government in several major cities The political machine was an organization that controlled a political party in a city and it offered services to voters in exchange for their support The political machine consisted of a pyramid system At the bottom of the pyramid were the precinct wards and captains Their duties were to gain voters support on a city block or neighborhood and report their success to the ward boss The middle of the pyramid held the ward bosses The ward bosses secured the votes received by giving jobs and favors to the poor Finally the top of the pyramid consisted of the city boss He controlled all the activities of each political party as well as city services such as the police and certain business affairs With the effort of each part of the pyramid this new form of government seemed to be successful until matters were taken into hands of greed With the limited power of the political machines and only secured votes elections sometimes couldnt be held and political machines turned to fraud They often padded voting lists of valid voters with the names of dogs children and people who have died Then under these fake names they would cast as many votes needed to win the election As new candidates flooded a political machine opportunities for graft arose and a political machine could
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