Barry Morris Goldwater was an American politician, businessman, and author who was a five-term United States Senator from Arizona and the Republican Party's nominee for President of the United States in 1964. Despite his loss of the 1964 presidential election in a landslide, Goldwater is the politician most often credited with sparking the resurgence of the American conservative political movement in the 1960s.
While he had supported other federal civil rights measures, Goldwater was a vocal opponent of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; he believed it to be an overreach by the federal government. Goldwater rejected the legacy of the New Deal and fought with the conservative coalition against the New Deal coalition. He also had a substantial impact on the libertarian movement. A significant accomplishment in his career was the passage of the Goldwater–Nichols Act of 1986.
In 1964, Goldwater mobilized a large conservative constituency to win the hard-fought Republican presidential primaries. Though raised as an Episcopalian, Goldwater was the first candidate of ethnically Jewish heritage to be nominated for President by a major American party.