In America, parties enter periods of hegemony when they are seen as having resolved the crisis of the age.
Lincoln, the first Republican president, reunited in blood a Union that had sundered over his election and a Southern rebellion against the ascendancy of an industrializing North.
With the crushing of the Confederacy by the armies of Sherman and Grant, the assassination of Lincoln on Good Friday, 1865, and the abolition of slavery, the Republican Party appeared to have solved the crisis of the age. The GOP owned the patriotism issue, “waving the bloody shirt,” and the morality issue, emancipation, and thus became America’s Party.
In 1932, it took a Depression to bring to power new men and ideas. In 1968, it took a divisive war, urban riots, assassinations and a cultural revolution to convince America to turn away from the party of their fathers. What is the calamity that is coming this time?
Pat Buchanan on the Current State of the GOP