Two party system a long standing tradition in American politics

By April Sopkin
Staff Writer
It’s hard to miss the fact that the elections are coming up, since it has quickly become a regular topic in newspapers and on news broadcasts. But as much information that is being put out about candidates and their campaigning efforts, how much do you really know about the political parties themselves? For a brief look inside the history of the two major political parties, Republican and Democratic, read on.
The Republican Party commence in the early 1850's by activists and individuals who strongly believed that the government should present Western land to settlers for free. But it was in 1856 that the Republican Party became a national one. They were thought of as the ‘third party’ because the Democrats and the Whigs were already established as a two-party system.
In the 1860’s, the Republicans worked hard to pass the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery, the 14th, which demanded equal protection under the laws, as well as the 15th, which supported voting rights for African-Americans.
The Republican Party was the first major party to favor women’s suffrage. The first Republican to run for presidential office and win was Abraham Lincoln, and the first woman ever elected to congress also happened to be a Republican, Jeanette Rankin in 1917. By the time the 1950's had rolled around, Republicans were finally becoming situated in the White House. They would dominate for 28 of a 40-year span, from 1952 until 1992. Nowadays, there are 31 Republican governors out of the 50 total. While a fellow Republican, George W. Bush, may be running for the presidential office, this particular party prefers governorships. Why? Because they feel that a government should be close to it’s people.
The Democratic Party, on the other hand, began way back in 1792, and was
known mostly as the ‘party of the common man.’ In 1800, the founder of the Democratic Party, Thomas Jefferson, was elected as the first Democratic president. In 1848, the Democratic National Committee was formed, and is currently the longest running political organization in the world. The Democratic Party took a different stance on things, and welcomed the many poverty-stricken immigrants who came to our country. The Democrats, like the Republicans, also supported the women’s suffrage, and as the nation strolled into the 20th century they were a dominant figure in local urban politics. Woodrow Wilson became the first Democratic president of the 20th century, passing the first labor and child welfare laws. It was in the 1960’s, though, that this political party began to really ignite with success. There was the man on the moon, the commencement of the Peace Corps, and a treaty banning the atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons was negotiated. In 1992, our current Democratic president, Bill Clinton, was
elected. After a 12-year stretch of Republican leadership many opted for the change. When President Clinton entered the White House, there was high unemployment, increasing crime, and overwhelming budget deficits. But now, unemployment is at it’s lowest in 29 years, and crime is also down in record levels. In 1996, President Clinton was re-elected.
There you have it—some background information on the two major political parties. So, which are you going to vote for?


The Republican Party was the first major party to favor women’s suffrage. The first Republican to run for presidential office and win was Abraham Lincoln, and the first woman ever elected to congress also happened to be a Republican, Jeanette Rankin in 1917. By the time the 1950's had rolled around, Republicans were finally becoming situated in the White House. They would dominate for 28 of a 40-year span, from 1952 until 1992. Nowadays, there are 31 Republican governors out of the 50 total. While a fellow Republican, George W. Bush, may be running for the presidential office, this particular party prefers governorships. Why? Because they feel that a government should be close to it’s people.
The Democratic Party, on the other hand, began way back in 1792, and was
known mostly as the ‘party of the common man.’ In 1800, the founder of the Democratic Party, Thomas Jefferson, was elected as the first Democratic president. In 1848, the Democratic National Committee was formed, and is currently the longest running political organization in the world. The Democratic Party took a different stance on things, and welcomed the many poverty-stricken immigrants who came to our country. The Democrats, like the Republicans, also supported the women’s suffrage, and as the nation strolled into the 20th century they were a dominant figure in local urban politics. Woodrow Wilson became the first Democratic president of the 20th century, passing the first labor and child welfare laws. It was in the 1960’s, though, that this political party began to really ignite with success. There was the man on the moon, the commencement of the Peace Corps, and a treaty banning the atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons was negotiated. In 1992, our current Democratic president, Bill Clinton, was
elected. After a 12-year stretch of Republican leadership many opted for the change. When President Clinton entered the White House, there was high unemployment, increasing crime, and overwhelming budget deficits. But now, unemployment is at it’s lowest in 29 years, and crime is also down in record levels. In 1996, President Clinton was re-elected.
There you have it—some background information on the two major political parties. So, which are you going to vote for?

photos


Mike Zdychnec, Executive Program Director for Healthcare Management at MN School of Business. (Photo by Ken Francis.)

JEN SCHUMACHER (far left), applauds as 15-year-old Matthew Trutna wins the 2015 Team Liam 5K Saturday. (Photos by Jennifer Edwards).

Kathleen R. Huber

DANCERS FROM JENNIFER’S DANCE CENTER will be performing at Disney World in Florida in October. Pictured (front row, left to right), are Grace Esselman, Lillian St. Jean, Sophia Gerou, Kailey Buchta, Rowan Payne and Hannah Oakes. Middle row are Amelia Cameron, Brianna Anthony, Jacqie Bengtson, Gianna Mitchell, Alex Dillion, Abby Yanke and Rose Curtis. Back row are Tori Ramert, Alexis Erickson, Sophia St. Ives, Tiana Link, Rachel Royseth, Kristian Kunkel, Brooklynn Bengtson, Nicole Bengtson and Kendall Luoma. Not pictured are Haylee Oakes and Melanie Miskowic. (Submitted photo).

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