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Should There Be A New Republican Party? Ask President Eisenhower

March 6, 2014

This article is really interesting, and worthy of your time.

Then, as now, Republicans were deeply divided. In the nineteen-fifties, the Party’s Old Guard still wanted to repeal much of the New Deal and didn’t much like that the Eisenhower Administration was increasing the minimum wage, expanding Social Security benefits, and even bragging about it. Eisenhower viewed the Ohio senator John W. Bricker as a particular annoyance, with his attempt to limit the President’s treaty-making powers through a  constitutional amendment. You can hear Ike’s frustration in a diary entry he wrote in November, 1954: the Party “must be known as a progressive organization or it is sunk. I believe this so emphatically that I think that far from appeasing or reasoning with the dyed-in-the-wool reactionary fringe, we should completely ignore it and when necessary, repudiate it.” He went even further when he spoke to a small group in the White House, saying, “If the right wing wants a fight, they’re going to get it. If they want to leave the Republican Party and form a third party, that’s their business, but before I end up, either this Republican Party will reflect progressivism or I won’t be with them anymore.”

One Comment leave one →
  1. March 6, 2014 6:35 PM

    He also warned against the power of a military-industrial complex. He also spent greatly on the Interstate System of roads–the infrastructure to increase commerce and create jobs. The current Republican Party is NOT the same.

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