In Proceedings By Catherine

Elephants & Donkeys. The history of the US two-party system

1828. In the heat of the presidential race between Republican John Quincy Adams (John Quincy Adams) and Democrat Andrew Jackson (Andrew Jackson). Opponents do not spare effort and money to denigrate each other in the eyes of voters: practiced eloquence, often crossing boundaries of morality and common sense. Until now, the presidential elections in 1828 is considered one of the dirtiest in the history of American politics.

Democratic candidate Jackson features a stubborn temper and populist slogans. One of them — «Give people the right to manage!» («Let the people rule!»). Republicans do not slow paraphrase a slogan in his own way. In their interpretation, it sounds like this: «If you give people the ability to manage, as a result the country is ruled by a handful of donkeys!» («If the people ruled, it would be a bunch of jackasses ruling the country!»).

But we must pay tribute to Andrew Jackson, the man is very clever and resourceful. He skilfully uses the natural qualities of the donkey as endurance, diligence and perseverance. Donkey in the interpretation of Jackson is the one who is ready to bear an excessive burden as long as necessary. And perhaps it is a humble donkey helping Jackson to win the race and take the post of the seventh US president.

The next mention of a donkey and its final approval as a symbol of the Democratic Party is connected with the name of cartoonist Thomas Nast (Thomas Nast). He is the author of the elephant, who later became the official symbol of the Republicans (by the way, and the donkey does not receive this honor). Nast wrote cartoons for the political magazine Harper’s Weekly (A Journal of Civilization), which have repeatedly portrays democracy as donkeys and Republicans as an elephant.

By the way, Thomas Nast fantasy we also owe the appearance of such outstanding images, like Santa Claus, Uncle Sam and a symbol of Columbia Pictures as a woman with a torch in his hand.

So, for 60-80 years of XIX century, the donkey and the elephant is firmly entrenched in the minds of Americans as symbols of the two major political parties of the country. These characters are true to this day.

Prominent representatives of the Republican and Democratic

Today the number of Republican presidents outnumber Democrats who held the highest office of the USA, but not much: 18 and 15, respectively. Here are the most recognizable representatives of each party among American presidents:

Republicans (Republicans)

Photography Name, year of Famous quote
Abraham Lincoln
(Abraham Lincoln)
«The best way to predict the future is to create it.» — «The best way to predict the future — is to create it.»
Theodore Roosevelt
(Theodore Roosevelt)
«Believe you can and you’re halfway there». — «Believe in what you can, and you — halfway to the dream.»
Richard Nixon
(Richard Nixon)
«A man is not finished when he is defeated. He is finished when he quits «. — «With the person is not all over, if he is defeated. It’s all over if he surrendered. »
Ronald Reagan
(Ronald Reagan)
«I believe the best social program is a job». — «I believe that the best social program — is work.»
George W. Bush
(George W. Bush)
«Family is where our nation finds hope, where wings take dream». — «Family — this is where our nation draws hope where dreams grow wings.»

Democrats (Democrats)

Photography Name, year of Famous quote
Harry Truman
(Harry S.Truman)
«It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit». — «It’s amazing what you can achieve if you do not think who ascribe all the honor.»
John F. Kennedy
(John F.Kennedy)
«A nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people». — «A nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in the market is afraid of its own people.»
Jimmy Carter
(Jimmy Carter)
«Our American values ​​are not luxuries but necessities — not the salt in our bread but the bread itself». — «Our American values ​​- is not a luxury, and — the need, not the salt in bread, and the bread.»
Bill Clinton
(Bill Clinton)
«We must teach our children to resolve problems with words, not weapons». — «We must teach our children to solve problems with words, not weapons.»

A Brief History of the policy

If you are interested in politics, or at least from time to time, watch the news, you may have encountered a lot of specific words and phrases: names of political beliefs («Right», «Left» and all those who between), the legislative and executive power, positions and simple Expressions (enter the law, to nominate a candidate, to resign and so on. d.). Of course, the topic of politics is very complex, but to get acquainted with the main political spectrum, political beliefs can be accepted by watching video:

I hope this article has helped you to understand the history of the origin of the names of the parties of America. Theme policy in English is very big. In one article, all aspects related to this phenomenon can not be described. On other aspects of the policy in English, see the following article «Political English». Stay tuned!



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