The Rise Of Modern Social Liberalism And Social Conservatism
Later we get a third way with Bill Clintons New Democrats. This third way is an extension;of the;progressive bourbon liberal wing, but mashed-up with the progressive social liberal wing, and Reagan-era;conservatism. These three social liberal ideologies which Clinton embodied can collectively be referred to as an;American liberalism. These factions, which we can today denote as;progressive, neoliberal, and social liberal, can be used to differentiate types of liberals on the political left from the New Deal Coalition and the modern Democratic party of today.
TIP: As noted above in the introduction, there is no one way to understand Americas political ideologies, but each angle we look at things from helps us to better understand;bits of the historic puzzle.
Republicans And Democrats After The Civil War
Its true that many of the first Ku Klux Klan members were Democrats. Its also true that the early Democratic Party opposed civil rights. But theres more to it.
The Civil War-era GOP wasnt that into civil rights. They were more interested in punishing the South for seceding, and monopolizing the new black vote.
In any event, by the 1890s, Republicans had begun to distance themselves from civil rights.
An Overview Of The Platform Switching By Party System And President From The Founders To Eisenhower
The First and Second Party Systems included some important changes and debates. Examples included the argument;over the Federalist favored Constitution, and the Anti-Federalist favored Articles of Confederation;and Bill of Rights;and debates over slavery, modernization, and;banking.;Major;changes began;at the end of the Second Party System.
The Second Party system ended with the;Whig Party dissolving;in 1854. They were critically divided by the;Kansas-Nebraska Act;and the related debate over;manifest destiny and popular sovereignty;. The heated battle;over whether;Kansas should be a slave state, and the debate over whether the south could keep expanding southward creating slave states,;resulted in the country being split.;This had happened in the Mexican-American war.;One;faction became the Northern Republicans and their;allies the Union, who wanted to hold together the Union under a strong central government. The other became the Southern ex-Democrats and their allies the Confederacy, who wanted independence;and wanted to expand southward, to for instance Cuba, creating new slave states. By the time;Lincoln took;office in 1861, the division was inescapable
FACT: The tension was so great the Democratic party ceased to exist from 1861 1865 as the Confederacy rejected the;concept of party systems; which is why we refer to;them ex-Democrats above.
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Summarizing The Party Systems As A Two
Current events and complexities aside, there has almost always been a two-party system in the United States. The mentality of each party can be expressed as northern;interests and southern interests, although I strongly prefer city interests and rural interests . Sometimes we see both;interests;in the same party, as;with Humphrey and LBJ, and sometimes it is less clear cut, but we can always spot it in any era.
Thus, we can use a simple two party answer as to which factions;held which interests over time, which I hope will be seen as helpful, and not divisive.;Remember the U.S. is a diverse Union;of 50 sovereign states and commonwealths where the need to get a majority divides us into red states and blue states as a matter of custom, not as enemies, but as a United Republic with a democratic spirit.
- Northern City Interests: Federalists, Whigs, Third Party Republicans, Fourth Party Progressive era Republicans , Fifth Party Democrats , Modern Democrats.
- Southern Rural Interests: Anti-Federalists, Democratic-Republicans, Third Party Democrats, Fourth Party Progressive Era Democrats , Fifth Party Republicans , Modern Republicans.
TIP: One way to;summarize all of this is by saying the changes happened under, or as a result of, key figures including Jefferson and Hamilton, Adams and Jackson, Lincoln, Grant, Cleveland, Bryan, the Roosevelts, Wilson, Hoover, LBJ, and Clinton. See a;comparison of the political ideology of each President from Washington to Obama.
A Summary Of Party Systems Realigning Elections And Switching Factions In The Major Us Political Parties
Now that we have the essential basics down, lets do an overview of all the changes .
Historians refer to the eras the changes;resulted in as party systems.
Each party system is defined by realigning elections or otherwise important elections like the elections of 1800,;1828, 1860,;1876, 1892,;1896,;1912, 1928,;1932, 1948,;1964,;1968, 1980,;1992, and;2000, key voter issues of the day like states rights, workers rights, social welfare, equal rights, central banking, and currency debates, and which factions were;in which parties at the time like;the New Deal Coalition and Conservative Coalition;.
Or, in a very general sentence, Solid South States Rights and Tea party-esquePopulist;Conservatives in the Democratic Party;and elite Social Liberal Progressives;in the Republican Party essentially switched parties from roughly 1900 to 2000, which resulted in red and blue states flipping from north to south .
That said, to complicate things, the Federalist line was historically anti-immigrant and nationalist and gave birth to the first Tea Party-like entities;the Know-Nothings in the North;and Anti-Masons in the North.
Despite this truism however, the Civil War forced factions to choose sides over slavery and expansion. Consequently, the Whig-allied;nativist populist factions disbanded, the New Republican Party formed, and ultimately the first Republican President Lincoln was no Know-Nothing.
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This Is Not A New Argument
Princeton University Edwards Professor of American History Tera Hunter told USA TODAY that this trope is a fallback argument used to discredit current Democratic Party policies.
At the core of the effort to discredit the current Democratic Party is the refusal to accept the realignment of the party structure in the mid-20th century, Hunt said.
In September, NPR host Shereen Marisol Maraji called the claim, one of the most well-worn clapbacks in modern American politics.
Comedian Trevor Noah tackled the misleading trope on an episode of “The Daily Show” in March 2016, after two CNN contributors debated the topic.
Every time I go onto Facebook I see these things: Did you know the Democrats are the real racist party and did you know the Republicans freed the slaves? Noah joked. A lot of people like to skip over the fact that when it comes to race relations, historically, Republicans and Democrats switched positions.
Who started the KKK? That was Democrats. Who was the party of slavery? Who was the part of Jim Crow and segregation? Who opposed the Civil Rights Movement? Who opposed voting rights? It was all the Democrats, the meme reads.
What Does Democratic Mean
Starting alphabetically, the word means pertaining to or of the nature of democracy or a democracy.
Simply put, the lowercase democratic is a word used to refer to anything that resembles or has to do with a , a form of in which the supreme power rests with the people and is exercised by them directly or by politicians that they elect to them. In practice, this is usually accomplished through a fair, organized system of voting, in which; or cast votes in support of political or societal issues .;
So, the word democratic is used to describe government systems that are or resemble democracies and the people that run these types of governments. The United States of America is a representative democracy in which the people elect representatives to perform the demands of politics on their behalf. This is why we say that the US is a democratic country or that we have a democratic form of government.;
The English word democratic dates all the way back to the late 1500 and early 1600s. It is derived from the Greek word dmokratía . The government system of the ancient Greek of Athens, in which the people held the power , is considered the worlds first democracy. Considering that Athens was a slave-owning society, its form of democracy was much different than the democratic governments of today.;
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The Kkk Was Founded By Democrats But Not The Party
The Ku Klux Klan was founded in 1866 by ex-Confederate soldiers Frank McCord, Richard Reed, John Lester, John Kennedy, J. Calvin Jones and James Crowe in Pulaski, Tennessee. The group was originally a social club but quickly became a violent white supremacist group.
Its first grand wizard was Nathan Bedford Forrest, an ex-Confederate general and prominent slave trader.
Experts agree the KKK attracted many ex-Confederate soldiers and Southerners who opposed Reconstruction, most of whom were Democrats. Forrest even spoke at the 1868 Democratic National Convention.
The KKK is almost a paramilitary organization thats trying to benefit one party. It syncs up with the Democratic Party, which really was a;racist party openly at the time, Grinspan said. But the KKK isnt the Democratic Party, and the Democratic Party isnt the KKK.
Although the KKK did serve the Democratic Partys interests, Grinspan stressed that not all Democrats supported the KKK.
The Anti-Defamation Leagues Center on Extremism senior fellow Mark Pitcavage told the Associated Press that many KKK members were Democrats because the Whig Party had died off and Southerners disliked Republicans after the Civil War. Despite KKK members’ primary political affiliation, Pitcavage said it is wrong to say the Democratic Party started the KKK.
A General Summary Of The Party Switching And Party Systems
Above I offered summaries in the for of bullet; pointed lists. Below Ill try to weave everything together into a story to offer another perspective:
As America became increasingly progressive over time, from 1776 forward, different socially conservative and socially liberal movements banded together to create the parties of each of the 6-7;Party Systems;.
This caused different;social-minded factions to align with different business-minded factions over time , and this changed the parties .
Oddly enough, this resulted in the previously Small Government Populist Democratic Party becoming the party of Big Government, Neoliberalism, Progressivism, Globalization, and Social Liberalism, and the previously Big Government Aristocratic party Republican Party becoming the party of;Small Government , Nativism, and Social Conservatism. Oddly again, despite the changes the Republicans have always been Protectionist, Nationalist, and Stricter on immigration . On that note, it is very important to understand that immigration changed the Democratic Party as they embraced new non-Anglo Protestant immigrants over time.
The tricky thing to grasp is that some conservatives want to conserve back to a time that they feel they had more freedom and that progressive social liberalism requires Big Government to implement.
Who Are The Racists And When Did They Switch Political Parties
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Democratic apologists instantly posted comments dismissing that claim, arguing that everybody knows that in the 1960s and 1970s, the racists within the Democrat Party left and became Republicans. 1 Is the claim true? Did the racist Democrats become the Republicans in the 1960s and 1970s who took over the south?
According to liberal Wikipedia, throughout the decades of Democratic racism, the South was known as The Solid Democratic South, composed of 16 states plus Washington, D.C., including Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas. 2 So did the racist Democrats switch in the 1960s and 1970s to become the Republicans who took over those states? Definitely not.
How Do We Know?
During the time of Reconstruction, as noted above with the Alabama poster, Republicans controlled the legislatures and were the Party of black Americans. But when Reconstruction ended in 1876, so, too, did Republican control of the South. The Democrats regained the control of those states that they held before the Civil War. So from the time of Reconstruction until the current time, did Republicans control the south in the 1960s and 1970s as critics claim?
In Louisiana, it was not until 2011 that the state legislature again became Republican. 5 For decades after the 60s and 70s, it, too, remained Democrat.
With That Said It Is More Complex Than We Can Just Say
With everything thus far said, we have only skimmed the surface.
The truth is, be we talking about the South or not, not every faction changes, and we have to account for more history than can fit in any essay. We have to account for;changing platforms, changing voter bases, congressional changes over decades, battles between factions within states and parties, the changing ideologies of factions and parties, technological changes of automation and modernization, business interested elites in both parties who tend to organize better and dominate, populists in both parties who cant always agree on divisive social issues, the general rift between key voter issues and social issues vs. economic issues, arguments over the size of state within parties, voter issues taking on new importances, single issue third parties, global politics, and so much else to fully tell this story.
This is to say, the;history of the major U.S. political parties if of course more complex than can just be said which is why we use terms like parties switched and party systems to preface this;long in depth essay.
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The Republican Sixth Party Strategy Where The Tea Party And Alt
Everything noted so far leads up to one other thing that needs to be discussed on its own .
After Voting Rights 1965 it wasnt just a matter of switching the South, it was a matter of taking that 1930s conservative coalition to the next level and the Republicans;switching themselves .
No social conservative faction was strong enough on its own to win an election, not after Voting Rights, but together, under a strategically planned big tent, the social conservatives and establishment conservatives;could create a siren-like;Frankensteins monster;to push for free-enterprise; and socially conservative values against the progressive state an increasingly progressive Democratic Party .
This story involves:
The Powell memo, the southern strategy, the John Birch Society, the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine, Goldwater, Nixon, Reagan, Norquist, Roger Aisle, Lee Atwater, Karl Rove, Fox News, Reagan, Right-Wing Radio, Alex Jones, Rush Limbaugh, and a vast;right-wing conspiracy aimed at getting;the many different social conservative and establishment conservative factions to adopt;each;others ideology .
Essentially, the Conservative Coalition in their fight against Communism and liberal democrats since WWI, but especially when their hand was forced post 1965, have created the modern right-wing populist political machine to counter the lefts own political machine .
This Isnt Just About The Solid South
Still, I get that this is about first and foremost debunking the Big Switch, so lets split the difference.
First, well offer a quick summary in the form of an introduction .
Then well tell the full history of both major parties, noting each switch, each President, and major events.
First, a bit more on the Solid South .
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The Parties Change Course
After the war, the Republican Party became more and more oriented towards economic growth, industry, and big business in Northern states, and in the beginning of the 20th;century it had reached a general status as a party for the more wealthy classes in society. Many Republicans therefore gained financial success in the prosperous 1920s until the stock market crashed in 1929 initiating the era of the Great Depression.
Now, many Americans blamed Republican President Herbert Hoover for the financial damages brought by the crisis. In 1932 the country therefore instead elected Democrat Franklin D. Roosevelt to be president.
The Democratic Party largely stayed in power until 1980, when Republican Ronald Reagan was elected as president. Reagans social conservative politics and emphasis on cutting taxes, preserving family values, and increasing military funding were important steps in defining the modern Republican Party platform.
Democrats Adopted Socialist Ideas From Europe
Then in the early 1900s, the Democratic party adopted the expanding progressivism and socialism of European countries. In the 1930s, Democratic president Franklin Roosevelt won reelection on the strength of the New Deal, a set of Depression-prolonging reforms. Roosevelt won in a landslide against Republican Alf Landon, who opposed these massive expansions of federal power. So, the Democratic Party quickly became the party of big government.
People sometimes argue that, the Democratic Party then became the party of big government and that the Republican party of big government became rhetorically committed to curbing federal power. How did this ideology switch happen?
Democratic Losses In State Legislative Seats
During Obama’s tenure, Democrats lost members in 82 of the 99 state legislative chambers across the country. These losses were most visible in both chambers of the Arkansas and West Virginia state legislatures as well as the state senate chambers in Alabama and Oklahoma.
The following table illustrates Democrats’ five largest losses in state legislative seats during President Obama’s two terms in office. Rankings were adjusted to account for varying sizes of legislative chambers.
|Top five Democratic losses in state legislative seats, 2009-2017|