As I float through debates on the Internets between Conservatives and Liberals, a constant theme I see from Conservatives is “The Southern Strategy is a myth,” and this is absolutely not true.
It seems like Republicans suffer from a case of believing a false statement simply because it’s repeated over and over again. There is ample evidence to prove the Southern Strategy was not a myth and to suggest otherwise would be dealing in falsehoods.
What does this organization have to do with anything, well…
https://riponsociety.org/riponforum/1969-10_VolV_No10.pdf Click for the full 1969 article.
So we have a GOP lobbyist group based in Washington DC since 1962, that years later contemplated the Southern Strategy and if it will be effective.
From Kevin P. Phillips, The Emerging Republican Majority, Ripon discusses the strategy Phillips presents in promoting the Republican Party. He relegates Yankees, Blacks and Jews to the Democratic Party and he concludes that the polarization of the parties should be sped up to “slow integration and the growth of Negro Power…” but ironically he believes this can only happen with the enfranchisement of the negro, which Ripon disapproves of below
For one to say that there was never a Southern Strategy, as you can see from the above documents, are categorically untrue. They knew very well the strategy to be employed to gain power in the GOP while pushing Black people out of the party that did not fit their agenda.
Beginning in the 60s as well, we have an explosion of party switching within congress from Democrat to GOP. Between 1960-69 you have at least 23 congressmen and governors including Strom Thurmond and Ronald Reagan switching parties. Between 1970-79 there were 18 congressmen who switched parties from Democrat to Republican with the trend continuing throughout the 80s and 90s. In all, the number of members of Congress that switched from Republican to Democrat between 1960-1989 was 22, including Hilary Clinton.
Strom Thurmond is perhaps the infamous case. Longest ever seated Senator and prime candidate for what would be considered “The Deep State,” he served as a Senator for 48 years pretty much unimpeded. In opposition to the Civil Rights Act of 1957, Thurmond conducted the longest running filibuster in US History. He also opposed the Civil Rights legislation of 1964 as well as the desegregation of school. An article from The NY Times reads Thurmond Break is Made Official, signaling his break from the party. He’s quoted saying “The Democratic Party has abandoned the people, it has repudiated the Constitution of the United States; it is leading the evolution of our country into a socialistic dictatorship,” ALLL because he didn’t want Black folks to gain their political rights through legislation. This guy even had a baby with a black woman, his house servant, that he only secretly acknowledged, and STILL opposed Civil Rights. What a terd.
Individual members of Congress to the side, we can also see evidence of a party switch in the electoral map from each presidential election. We have to remember that the Political Party promotes a Political Ideology. In other words, the ideologies of liberalism, conservatism, socialism, fascism, or whatever, is adopted and promoted by a political party and the values they want to promote. The ideology within a party can change depending on the social climate, new generation, new ideas, etc.
When Lincoln and the Union fought the Confederacy, Lincoln, the Union, and Black people after 1866’s Civil Rights Bill were—Republican. These Republicans, which included abolitionist, activist, Quaker’s, Black people, And Yankees were motivated by a liberal National agenda. They fought for the ending of Slavery, the protection Civil Rights and Voting Rights, Representation, as well as equality for all Men guaranteed under the protection of the Federal Government. Taking this into consideration and the definition of liberal—willing to accept or respect behavior or opinions different from ones own; a supporter of policies that are socially progressive and promote social welfare. Conservative being adverse to change or innovation and holding traditional values; a person favoring free enterprise, private ownership, and socially traditional ideas, who do you think were the Conservatives and Liberals?
When Democrats flew the confederate flag, wore KKK bed sheets, and enforced Jim Crow, they were fueled by their conservative values. Conserving their social status, their traditions, their political power base, their economic power base, and State Rights is what fueled the motives of Democratic Party. Until FDR—a Democrat, the party was very conservative, however, Roosevelt began introducing a very liberal agenda, the New Deal, in order to get through the Depression and WWII. It proved successful, and it attracted Black Republicans, who were now growing disillusioned with the GOP because of unfulfilled promises.
Fast forward to the 1970s, the GOP begins the Southern Strategy to fully take control of the Southern Democratic South, and Black people begin to grow political power within the Democratic Party within congress. By 1980 the whole political Map was red. Otherwise, if the parties didn’t switch, why are the Republicans today flying Confederate flags that Republicans 150 years ago fought against?
So the Southern Strategy is definitely real and it has definitely been effective in its execution. There is no conspiracy theory or deep state to it, it’s just a part of the political process and the changing political and social climate. A little due diligence can debunk the falsities that may be promoted by less than credible sources.