As an American history teacher, I was shocked to see the red billboard, paid for by the Spokane GOP, proclaiming that the Republican Party had been established to end slavery.
That little factoid is true, but actions speak louder than words. Today’s GOP is far different than the one founded in 1854. Abraham Lincoln would surely have been despised by the current MAGA crowd. The trust-busting Republican president, Theodore Roosevelt, would not have survived as a candidate in today’s Republican climate. Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower would have been called a socialist today for signing the Federal Aid Highway Act.
What president signed an executive order integrating the military after World War II? Democratic President Harry S. Truman. Who signed the Voting Rights Act and Civil Rights Act? Democratic President Lyndon B. Johnson.
Conversely, what president used the “Southern strategy” to scare white folks into voting for him? Republican Richard M. Nixon. What is the party of the governors who have signed legislation that will restrict voting for people of color? Republican Gov. Abbott of Texas, Ron DeSantis of Florida, and Brian Kemp of Georgia.
What has the Republican Party done in the past 50 years to address the systemic inequity that limits the ability of every person to reach their potential? This holiday season the Spokane County GOP should have spent their money on something actually helpful like food banks instead of a disingenuous billboard crowing about an accomplishment their current members would no doubt have voted against.