The Republican Party, known as the Grand Old Party (GOP), was formed to curtail the division of the United States over slavery. In 1820, the Missouri Compromise divided the States at the Mason-Dixon Line – the pro-slave South was below the line and the abolitionist North above. For almost three decades the peace lasted, but as new territories formed, the problem began to fester again. A new compromise called the Kansas-Nebraska Act was signed in 1854 allowing the settlers of the new lands to decide if their state would be free or slave, but the country was still divided. It was time to form a new party – one that would promote liberty and freedom rather then the spread of slavery. Eighty years after the Declaration of Independence was penned, the first Republican Convention was held in Philadelphia in 1856. Four years later, the GOP nominated Abraham Lincoln to run for president. After winning the election, Lincoln carried this nation through its bloodiest war and kept the country together, before being assassinated while in office. Since then, Republicans have dominated the political scene with 17 more GOP presidents. The GOP is the second oldest political party in United States – it resolved to promote the “republican values” of Thomas Jefferson – and deemed itself a necessary champion of the civic values of the 1776 republic versus the aristocracy and corruption that existed in the South. Since their conception, the Republicans have supported free markets and individual achievement to attain economic prosperity, fiscal conservatism, and personal responsibility over entitlements. This article is not intended to sway your political opinion – each individual’s politics is a personal matter – but it is our responsibility as Americans to understand the issues and values of each party and to vote accordingly. Next month, I will discuss the long history and varied platforms of the Democratic Party.
SharLeigh has an inquisitive nature – she is interested in current events, history, science and many more subjects, including things that go bump in the night! Since 1997, SharLeigh has scoured the internet, looking for interesting, fun and timely topics covering all sorts of human-interest subjects for her articles from her home in Fontana, CA.