The GOP in North Carolina was especially egregious.
Republicans there instituted a series of new voting restrictions that federal courts later struck down as unconstitutional, because they targeted African Americans "with almost surgical precision." thenation.com/article/the-su…
First of all, there's no way you really looked up "the Congressional Record for 1866" because the Congressional Record didn't start until 1873.
What you've got there -- which somebody else apparently looked up -- is from the *precursor* to the Record, the Congressional Globe.
Second, here's a thread by @skantrow, an actual historian who's expert on this era, who *did* look into the full debate -- which, again, was in the Congressional Globe -- rather than clumsily cherry-pick a quotation.
"Why should I vote for a party that doesn’t really do anything for me as a voter?"
Well, why should a party do anything for you if you don't vote?
Do you think sitting it out is going to change things? They'll suddenly care about your issues because...? nymag.com/intelligencer/…
Parties go after votes, which means they focus on issues that are important to the people who will most likely vote.
It's not an accident that both parties are attentive to Medicare and Social Security. It's because they know if they don't, they'll pay a price with seniors.
Parties aren't set in stone, either.
If you follow me here on Twitter, you may have noticed me explaining that they have actually changed a little over time, shifting radically on key issues -- solely because they thought they could get the votes of more voters that way.
The Second Klan's nativism was both racial and religious in nature, a defense of "true Americanism" that they defined as White Anglo Saxon Protestantism.
So they targeted African Americans like the first Klan had, but also Jews and Catholics -- religions they deemed foreign.
Nationally, Catholics were the main threat in the Klan's eyes in the 1920s, as the numbers of Catholics had steadily grown over the previous decades with new waves of immigration from southern and eastern Europe.
The Klan capitalized on a wider panic over Catholic influence.
In 1860, Lincoln ran on a platform that called for open immigration, called for an easy path to citizenship for those who did come, and even offered free land grants to those who had merely applied for citizenship.
The 1864 GOP platform reaffirmed: "foreign immigration, which in the past has added so much to the wealth, development of resources and increase of power to the nation, the asylum of the oppressed of all nations, should be fostered and encouraged by a liberal and just policy.”
In general, the Republican Party of the 1860s significantly expanded the federal government, created the IRS, fought corporate power, funded a huge system of public colleges, and called for reparations for slavery.
It also, um, impeached an incompetent and corrupt president.
This one in particular is repeated several times in his feed.
And, yes, of course, the facts are correct! But the implication behind it -- the idea that the parties today are *exactly* the same as they were in the 1860s -- is just complete nonsense.
I mean, yes, the GOP was the party of civil rights in the 1860s. Absolutely.
And along with that, it wanted reparations for slavery, gave away land to settlers (including non-citizen immigrants), spent a fortune on public colleges, created the IRS and fought corporate power too.
This is your semi-regular reminder that if you follow me on Twitter because you like seeing a historian push back against the peddlers of fake history, there are actually a whoooooole lot of other historians on here you should be following too.
Every single one that I follow. Seriously, hit my following list, scroll down to the very bottom and work your way up, because my fellow historians are the reason I'm here.
For starters, I'll single out some who *really* lean into correcting the record: