Historical Analogy Question: Describe How The Democratic Party Has Changed And Transformed In The Southern Region Of America

1174 words - 5 pages

America’s Democratic Party is one of the country’s two major political parties. The organization has a long history, but when compared to the Democratic Party of 1792, today’s party is very different.The Democratic Party was founded in the 1790’s by Thomas Jefferson, who was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson became the first Democratic President of the United States in 1800. Over next 70 years, as the organization grew, so did its support in the South.After the end of the Civil War in 1865, African Americans favored the Republican Party and its anti-slavery views, while the Democratic majority was Southern Whites, who were not in favor of political rights for former slaves (Grantham, 1992).In 1868, Ulysses S. Grant, a Republican, was elected President with the help of African American Republicans, who were voting in a presidential election for the first time. During Grant’s presidency, the Radical Republicans introduced the15th Amendment, which stated that a right to vote could not be denied because of “race, color, or previous condition of servitude” (Carnes & Garraty, 2006, p. 434)Over the years, the Democratic Party has left behind many of its old principles and ideals, especially with today’s presence of African Americans in the party. The Democrats once maintained the support of White Southerners by backing Jim Crow laws and supporting racialHistorical Analogy 2segregation, but today, the majority of African Americans vote for the Democratic ticket (Aldrich, 1995).African Americans began to shift from the Republican Party to the Democratic Party in the 1940s, despite the Democrats opposition to 14th Amendment, which granted citizenship to “all persons born or naturalized in the United States” (Carnes & Garraty, 2006, p. 430).In the election of 1940, Franklin D. Roosevelt, a Democrat, added civil rights to his party platform. As a result, Roosevelt and the Democratic Party gained support from African American voters (Aldrich, 1995).Today, the majority of African Americans are registered as Democrats. John Kerry carried 89% of the African American vote in the 2004 presidential election, and African Americans continue to gain more political position in the Democratic Party (Wenner, 2004). In 2008, the Democrats nominated Illinois Senator Barack Obama, as its presumptive presidential nominee, solidifying Obama’s place in history as the first African American to be a major political party's presumptive nominee for President of the United States.For almost a century after the end of the Civil War, the Democratic Party had a strong presence in the Southern region of America. From 1880 to 1960, the region was known as the “Solid South” because Democrats won by large margins in the area (Grantham, 1992).The Solid South began to come apart when President Harry S. Truman, a Democrat, began supporting the civil rights movement (Black & Black,...

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