Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in History


History & Political Science


College of Arts & Humanities

Committee Chair

Dr. Jeff Woods

Second Committee Member

Dr. Michael Rogers

Third Committee Member

Dr. James Moses

Program Director

Dr. David Blanks

Dean of Graduate College

Dr. Richard Schoephoerster


In 2020, there is a misconception that the Republican Party is still the party of Abraham Lincoln. The goal of this paper is to prove that statement incorrect and explain how it came to be incorrect by providing a detailed, methodical chain of evidence. It will separate the Party’s perceived image from reality. This paper will analyze pre-Cold War Republican Party and establish the party’s traditional policies before abandoning centrism in the 1960s and 1970s. Then the emerging Republican Party will be compared with the pre-1960 party. This paper will reflect on Republican Party power dynamics, economic strategies, social priorities, and foreign policy. To illuminate both Republican rhetoric and policy implementation, the paper will concentrate on times of Republican control of the Executive and/or Legislative Branches of government: 1920-1930, 1952-1960, 1968-1972, 1980-1992, 2001-2007, and 2017-2019.