Why HAVE the Republican and Democratic parties shifted about so dramatically?
January 3, 2001 9:08 PM   Subscribe

Why HAVE the Republican and Democratic parties shifted about so dramatically? In most periods from 1789 to the present, the US has had two dominant national parties competing to control government: Federalists vs Republicans (1790s-1810s), National Republicans vs Democratic Republicans (1810s-1830s), Whigs vs Democrats (1830s-1850s), Republicans vs Democrats (1850s-present). Despite the changing names, the underlying coalitions have been remarkably stable. In effect, there have been only two main parties in American history: the northern party and the southern party. [via A&LD]
posted by rushmc (7 comments total)
Great article. Absolutely filled with (what I imagine are) gross generalizations but a very interesting read.
posted by lagado at 10:42 PM on January 3, 2001

It managed to portray all of American politics as extremely repugnant. So I figured it must be a pretty fair representation.
posted by rushmc at 9:45 AM on January 4, 2001

Crap, slashdotted. I have a few criticisms I'd like to apply.

Today, I think it's far more accurate to say that there's an urban party, and a rural party. Compare this electoral map. For a sense of how this translates regionally, examine my proportional electoral college map. I definitely think there's a return to regionalism in American politics, which was somewhat obscured during the past 50 years during the Cold War.
posted by dhartung at 4:38 PM on January 4, 2001

Dan, you can fill in the white squares now. :(
posted by rodii at 8:23 PM on January 4, 2001

I don't know about that...Up until the Mexican War, as far as I'm aware, the split wasn't between North/South. The split has *always* been, as far as I know, between the rural and the city.

posted by Kevs at 8:45 PM on January 4, 2001

FWIW, Bush would have taken 5 or 6 extra EVs from Gore if the new electoral map had been in effect two months ago.
posted by aaron at 10:36 PM on January 4, 2001

I guess I can never move that electoral map. There's a million and two links to it.
posted by capt.crackpipe at 3:30 AM on January 6, 2001

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