Why Lincoln Wouldn't Win the GOP's Nomination
Jackie Hogan gives 4 reasons today's GOP would write off Abe
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Feb 20, 2012 11:47 AM CST
Updated Feb 20, 2012 1:59 PM CST
Portrait of the 16th United States President, Abraham Lincoln.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Sure, the GOP calls itself the "Party of Lincoln," but would today's Republicans actually nominate him for president? Writing in the Christian Science Monitor, Jackie Hogan gives four reasons why they wouldn't:

  1. He was the first president to make income tax law—and it was a progressive income tax that required the richest to pay a higher rate. What's more, he taxed earned income and capital gains at the same rate.

  1. He never talked about his personal faith, despite making references to God in speeches. In fact, he appears to have had doubts about orthodox Christian practices.
  2. He wasn't particularly attractive; compare his ill-fitting suits and messy hair to Mitt Romney's flawless appearance. Indeed, upon being labeled "two-faced," he responded, "If I were two-faced, would I be wearing this one?"
  3. He was generally moderate, and offered lengthy arguments to defend his positions. The short Gettysburg Address was an outlier: A major speech in 1854 was longer than three hours, and in the Lincoln-Douglas debates, the men took turns speaking for up to 90 minutes each.
Click through for the reasons why the GOP might have supported him anyway.

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Showing 3 of 56 comments
DERY
Feb 23, 2012 2:10 AM CST
On the other hand, Lincoln had innocent people locked up, suspended Habeas Corpus, and abused his authority in the name of fighting the war. So maybe he would get elected afterall.
tdemex
Feb 21, 2012 12:05 AM CST
It's the New Lunatic Fringe! How far right can they go and out do each other to LOSE! Guess it's like a race to the bottom of the barrel!!! We SCREW up the Global Economy then Blame it on OBAMA, hope the American people are dumber than we think ....then WIN! What a platform!!!! EH?,,,
Bentham
Feb 20, 2012 5:30 PM CST
Young people and people who aren't too expert in history do not fully realize that the political philosophy of the major parties shifted dramatically with the Great Depression. For example: today 90% of African-Americans (or more) vote for Democratic candidates. But did you know that the Republican candidate Herbert Hoover got most of the African American vote in 1932? The shift came with FDR and the introduction of the New Deal in the 1930s. In 1936 most African-Americans voted for FDR. From then on (1936 on), the Democratic Party has considered itself the champion of the downtrodden and disadvantaged (thus of women, minorities and children). Republicans today believe in the status quo. Compare the conservatives of 1850 who were ready to continue the status quo (with slavery!) - for all kinds of "rational" reasons. Lincoln was obviously a believer in working toward social EQUALITY. Republicans believe in merit, and that is not the same thing.