The Giver Totalitarian Society

Issues facing parties and the United States after World War II included the Cold War and the Civil Rights Movement. Republicans attracted conservatives and white Southerners from the Democratic coalition with their resistance to New Deal and Great Society liberalism and the Republicans’ use of the Southern strategy. African Americans, who traditionally supported the Republican Party, began supporting Democrats following the ascent of the Franklin Roosevelt administration, the New Deal, and the Civil Rights movement.

The Democratic Party’s main base of support shifted to the Northeast, marking a dramatic reversal of history. Bill Clinton was elected to the presidency in 1992, governing as a New Democrat. The Democratic Party lost control of Congress in the election of 1994 to the Republican Party. Re-elected in 1996, Clinton was the first Democratic President since Franklin Roosevelt to be elected to two terms. Following twelve years of Republican rule, the Democratic Party regained majority control of both the House and the Senate in the 2006 elections.

Some of the party’s key issues in the early 21st century in their last national platform have included the methods of how to combat terrorism, homeland security, expanding access to health care, labor rights, environmentalism, and the preservation of liberal government programs. [10] In the 2010 elections, the Democratic Party lost control of the House, but kept a small majority in the Senate (reduced from the 111th Congress). It also lost its majority in state legislatures and state governorships.

The Democratic Party traces its origins to the inspiration of Democratic-Republican Party, founded by Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and other influential opponents of the Federalists in 1792. That party also inspired the Whigs and modern Republicans. Organizationally, the modern Democratic Party truly arose in the 1830s, with the election of Andrew Jackson. Since the division of the Republican Party in the election of 1912, it has gradually positioned itself to the left of the Republican Party on economic and social issues.

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Until the period following the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964—which was championed by a Democratic president but faced lower Democratic than Republican support in Congress—the Democratic Party was primarily a coalition of two parties divided by region. Southern Democrats were typically given high conservative ratings by the American Conservative Union while northern Democrats were typically given very liberal ratings. Southern Democrats were a core bloc of the bipartisan conservative coalition which lasted through the Reagan-era.

The economically activist philosophy of Franklin D. Roosevelt, which has strongly influenced American liberalism, has shaped much of the party’s economic agenda since 1932, and served to tie the two regional factions of the party together until the late 1960s. In fact, Roosevelt’s New Deal coalition usually controlled the national government until the 1970s. [11] Based on a series of polls conducted in 2010, Gallup found that 31% of Americans identified as Democrats, 29% as Republicans, and 38% as Independents. 12] A similar series of polls conducted in 2011 found the percentage of Democrats to be the same at 31%, while a two percentile-point rise in the number of Independents, to an all-time high of 40%, appeared to stem from an equal drop in the number of those Americans identifying themselves as Republicans from the previous poll, to 27%. [13] A Pew Research Center survey of registered voters released August 2010 stated that 47% identified as Democrats or leaned towards the party; the same poll found that 43% of registered voters identified as Republicans or leaned towards the Republican party. [14]

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