The Republican party was founded in 1854 by a number of different groups, such as modernists and ex-free soldiers. These groups were brought together as a result of their “radical” opposition to, and hope for abolition of slavery in the United States. Despite this, the Republican party dominated politics between 1860 and 1932. On the other hand, the Democratic party is the long standing opposing political group to the Republicans. They were not founded, per say, but rather evolved from the Democratic – Republican group that was formed in opposition to the Federalists.
During the Republican party’s political domination, the Democrats fought hard against them, as they wanted to maintain, and even expand slavery. In fact, it was a branch of the Southern Democratic party that began the Ku Klux Klan in an attempt to terrorize free slaves and any Republican’s who had helped free them. Nevertheless, despite the opposition from the Democrats, the Republicans eventually abolished slavery in 1865 with the passing of the 13th Amendment–100% of Republicans voted for it and only 23% of Democrats. Moreover, oppose to the Democrats, the Republicans went on to support the passing of the 14th Amendment in 1868–giving free slaves full citizenship, and the 15th Amendment–aimed to give free slaves the right to vote in 1871.
However, since the 1950’s and 1960’s the changes that have occurred in terms of public party political affiliation have been slow, strategic, and complex. But they’ve seemed to have switched in allegiance: the Republicans becoming the most racist political group.
Then presidential candidate Richard Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” can be attributed to this phenomena. Because segregation laws had been implemented and dismantled the existing system of Jim Crow laws that “legally enforced segregation during the Reconstruction Era,” the Republicans needed an effective method to attract white, southern voters. Therefore, Republican leaders consciously introduced the Southern Strategy, which was intended to gain political support in the Southern United States by appealing to racism against African Americans. The usage of racial resentments in order to gain the white vote worked, consequently, losing the predominant black vote for the Republican party.
On the other hand, Democratic party shifted from being openly racist, as they once were, to being far more guarded about their opinions. Furthermore, it is believed that many of the Democratic polices were put in place solely to ensure that African-Americans would become primarily dependent on the party in order to ensure their votes.
It is more probable that the shift from Republican to Democratic dominance is also the result of Republicans’ association with rigid Christian values and the rejection of secularism. For example, supporting abortion and gay marriage are of huge secular importance, but are also largely opposed by stringent Christians, thus pushing the latter (liberal) individuals towards Democratic support- despite the party’s previous history of racism. The current political situation has occurred thanks to a number of turning points in history that have seen black support for the Republican Party dropping off, and white support increasing.
Today Democratic policies are thought to be more beneficial to minorities, and it is the Republicans who are largely opposed and considered racist. This is a result of the Republican party’s consistent hostility toward the fundamental human rights of minorities, its continued efforts at privatizing the criminal justice, educational, and healthcare systems, as well as other institutions that are imperative for the success of oppressed people. Furthermore, the Republican party has persistently catered to predominantly white communities with high levels of racial segregation.
However in the 2016 Presidential Race, many people argue that the Republican party has shown signs of diversity, considering there has been a woman (Carly Fiorina), an African-American (Ben Carson) and two Latinos (Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz) candidates. But others challenge that those candidates were mere “tokens” used as pandering tools to give the illusion of racial inclusion and diversity. The fact can’t be denied that as time has gotten closer to the primary election, most of those “diversified” candidates have proven to have lost their value.
In text source data used
- Circa the late ‘1990s you saw the last generation that had republican liberals and democratic conservatives.’ https://www.quora.com/Is-it-true-that-Democrats-used-to-be-the-conservative-party-and-Republicans-used-to-be-the-progressive-party
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