The main reason that the United States Senate failed to ratify the treaty of Versailles was the opposition forces, both liberal and conservative, formed an overwhelming body that enabled them to defeat any proposal that Wilson or his various collaborators could bring about.
The body that opposed Wilson was composed of a huge variety of forces representing a huge section of the political spectrum. Liberals as well as conservatives hated Wilson’s bringing about of the forced involvement in world politics. There reasons were formed from many different possible scenarios, from projectionists who cry from the senate that “[no one] will advocate the matters which are of vital importance to are people and shall be submitted to a tribunal created by other than by our own people” (doc. A), to liberals who rallied against the treaty because “liberals all over the world thought that war would moralize the nation by releasing it from class bondage and exclusive ambitions. [They felt] That the Treaty of Versailles would not even try to satisfy these aspirations” (doc. B). In addition the leading economist of the time, John Keynes, thought that the European powers were seizing upon Wilson’s idealistic views of the world to secure for themselves a perpetually war ground on which the powers of the world could test themselves, to the detriment of the common peoples that occupied the various jousting grounds the powers endeavored to conquer.
In addition some of the parties that attempted to support Wilson’s plan succeeded in alienating Wilson’s other wise allies from contributing their prestige to further Wilson’s proposal. Most notable among these factions were the backs and women, the black very enthusiastic about the possibility of “including nearly every Negro government of the world to meet in Geneva with 41 other nations to form the assembly of the League of Nations” (Doc H). W.E.B. Du Bois labeled this event “the most forward looking event of the century” and boisterously supported the idea. This effect only served to exacerbate Wilson’s woes as it called into for the deep seated racism that was still very evident in all facets of American life and served to further alienate Wilson’s supporters. Woodrow Wilson appealed to the nation as to the great good that would come from this magnanimous enterprise, but though he received overwhelming public support, the opponents that he had gathered in congress proved much to strong a force for him to possibly surmount. His demonstrations to the publics were much better suited to a different age when it would be possible for public opinion to influence the bureaucracy that is so prevalent throughout the divisions of power.