What a difference 56 years makes!

Political Loudmouth shared a link to The American Presidency Project the other day- specifically a link to the Republican Party’s platform in 1956.

It is striking how different the Republican Party is today.  Today it is a party of ‘small government’ at the expense of citizens’ health, financial well being, and education.  It is a party that values ‘national security’ over personal liberties.  It is a party that supports the Second Amendment at the expense of public safety.  This is not the Republican Party of 1956.

Here are some excerpts from the Republican Party’s Declaration of Faith from August 1956 that struck me.

On its Centennial, the Republican Party again calls to the minds of all Americans the great truth first spoken by Abraham Lincoln: “The legitimate object of Government is to do for a community of people whatever they need to have done but cannot do at all, or cannot so well do, for themselves in their separate and individual capacities. But in all that people can individually do as well for themselves, Government ought not to interfere.”

While jealously guarding the free institutions and preserving the principles upon which our Republic was founded and has flourished, the purpose of the Republican Party is to establish and maintain a peaceful world and build at home a dynamic prosperity in which every citizen fairly shares.

We shall continue our insistence on honesty as an indispensable requirement of public service. We shall continue to root out corruption whenever and wherever it appears.

We are proud of and shall continue our far-reaching and sound advances in matters of basic human needs—expansion of social security—broadened coverage in unemployment insurance —improved housing—and better health protection for all our people. We are determined that our government remain warmly responsive to the urgent social and economic problems of our people.

We pledge to continue our efforts, blocked by the Democratic leadership of the 84th Congress, for a financially sound, more nearly self-sustaining postal service—with the users of the mails paying a greater share of the costs instead of the taxpayers bearing the burden of huge postal deficits.

We pledge to continue and to complete this vitally needed program of modernization of buildings, equipment, methods and service, so that the American people will receive the kind of mail delivery they deserve—the speediest and best that American ingenuity, technology and modern business management can provide.

We recommend to Congress the submission of a constitutional amendment providing equal rights for men and women.

–emphasis mine, Source

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