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In the 19th century, Southern Democrats comprised whites in the South who believed in Jeffersonian democracy. In the 1850s they defended slavery in the United States, and promoted its expansion into the West against northern Free Soil opposition. The United States presidential election of 1860 formalized the split, and brought war. After Reconstruction ended in the late 1870s they controlled all the Southern states and disenfranchised blacks (who were Republicans). The “Solid South” gave nearly all its electoral votes to Democrats in presidential elections. Republicans seldom were elected to office outside some Appalachian mountain districts and a few heavily German-American counties of Texas.[a]
The monopoly that the Democratic Party held over most of the South first showed major signs of breaking apart in 1948, when many Southern Democrats, dissatisfied with the policies of desegregation enacted during the administration of Democratic President Harry Truman, created the States Rights Democratic Party, which nominated South Carolina Governor Strom Thurmond for president and Mississippi Governor Fielding L. Wright for vice president. The “Dixiecrats” managed to win many Southern states, but collapsed as a party soon after the election. The Civil Rights Act of 1964, signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson, a Democrat from the Southern state of Texas, led many Southern Democrats to vote for Goldwater at the national level. In the ensuing years, the increasing conservatism of the Republican Party compared to the liberalism of the Democratic Party led many more conservative white Democrats in the South to vote Republican. Many continued to vote for Democrats at the state and local levels for years after. By the start of the 21st century, Republicans had gained a solid advantage over Democrats at all levels of politics in most Southern states.
Throughout his entire life, Thomas Jefferson was a consistent opponent of slavery. Calling it a “moral depravity”1 and a “hideous blot,”2 he believed that slavery presented the greatest threat to the survival of the new American nation.3 Jefferson also thought that slavery was contrary to the laws of nature, which decreed that everyone had a right to personal liberty.4 These views were radical in a world where unfree labor was the norm.
At the time of the American Revolution, Jefferson was actively involved in legislation that he hoped would result in slavery’s abolition.5 In 1778, he drafted a Virginia law that prohibited the importation of enslaved Africans.6 In 1784, he proposed an ordinance that would ban slavery in the Northwest territories.7 But Jefferson always maintained that the decision to emancipate slaves would have to be part of a democratic process; abolition would be stymied until slaveowners consented to free their human property together in a large-scale act of emancipation. To Jefferson, it was anti-democratic and contrary to the principles of the American Revolution for the federal government to enact abolition or for only a few planters to free their slaves.8
Considering slavery isn't something necessarily attached solely to a political party in a country that isn't even as old as some snow caps in Denmark...
How Not to Welcome Refugees
Disingenuous at best.
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