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GOP Facts

Although the youngest of the two major political parties in the United States, the Republican party is nicknamed the "Grand Old Party" and called the "GOP" for short.

Since Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president, the party is sometimes referred to as the Party of Lincoln but the term GOP is used most often.

Some historical facts about the GOP:

  • 1st Republican convention was held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on February 22, 1856.
  • 1st Republican nominee for president was John C. Fremont.
  • Abraham Lincoln became the 1st Republican president and the 1st president to be assassinated.
  • Andrew Johnson became president after Lincoln was assassinated. He was the 1st president to be impeached, but was later acquitted by the Senate.
  • Ulysses S. Grant, as president, presided over the first half of reconstruction efforts after the Civil War.
  • 1st African Americans elected to Congress in 1869 were members of the Republican party.
  • The party symbol, the elephant, was first brought to life by cartoonist, Thomas Nast, in 1874.
  • James Garfield assassinated in 1881. Succeeded by Vice President Chester A. Arthur.
  • William McKinley presided over the Spanish-American War. Assassinated in 1901. Succeeded by Theodore Roosevelt.
  • Theodore Roosevelt was a conservationist who created the National Park Services.
  • William Howard Taft expanded the Civil Service and helped to modernize the Postal Service.
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower enlarged the Social Security Program and started the Interstate Highway System.
  • Richard M. Nixon helped establish the Environmental Protection Agency. Resigned from office in 1974 because of the Watergate Scandal.
  • Ronald Reagan started the War on Drugs. Shot during an assassination attempt but made a speedy recovery. Credited with ending the Cold War.
  • George H. W. Bush led United Nations coalition that defeated Iraq in the 1st Gulf War.

The Republican party, second in size to the Democrats, has over 55 million registered voters. Although second in size to the Democratic Party, the Republicans have won more presidential elections than any other party.

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