Today is the 96th Birthday of former President Jimmy Carter, the longest lived American President, who surpassed Herbert Hoover in retirement years in 2012.
He and his wife and Vice President Walter Mondale will, God Willing, celebrate 40 years in retirement on January 20, 2021, when we will see the likely inauguration of a man just as decent and humane as Jimmy Carter, Joe Biden!
Carter has been much attacked unjustly, and not appreciated for his amazing environmentalism; the creation of three Cabinet agencies (Education, Health and Human Services, Energy); the Egyptian Israeli Peace Treaty at Camp David, which has held for more than 40 years; the Panama Canal Treaty; and his amazing Post Presidential career of good deeds, including the building of housing for Habitat for Humanity, but also his Carter Center fighting against disease, insuring fair elections in other nations, and promoting peace and democracy around the world.
Carter will rise in ratings of scholars once he passes from the scene, just as Harry Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower did in the years after their deaths, as often, Presidents are not appreciated in their lifetimes, with the best example being Abraham Lincoln!
Let us hope that Carter reaches the age of 100 four years from now with his bride Rosalynn by his side, and Walter Mondale too!
The Republican Party of the past stood against slavery and slavery expansion, and for racial equality and civil rights, in the age of Abraham Lincoln.
The Republican Party of the past stood for progressive reform in the Progressive Era of Theodore Roosevelt, for conservation of natural resources, labor rights, and the rights of women.
The Republican Party of the 1960s and 1970s used the words “moderate” and “progressive” in its party platforms, and backed wage and price controls under Richard Nixon; support for an equal rights amendment for women; called for help for minority groups; federal funding for mass transit projects; advocated voting rights for Washington, DC in the House of Representatives and US Senate; promoted environmental standards; supported civil rights protesters; backed immigration and rights of workers in a broad context; supported expansion of Social Security; called for campaign finance reform to overcome the power and influence of political action committees; and avoided a stand on abortion rights, acknowledging the controversy over it after Roe V. Wade in 1973, but not condemning abortion until 1980.
The Republican Party of past eras—Lincoln, TR, and the 1960s and 1970s—was a moderate, mainstream party, and could work and negotiate with Democrats.
That is no longer true in the age of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, where even a “moderate” Republican in Massachusetts ten years ago is now selling his soul to the emergent right wing of the party, against all of the principles of the historic Republican Party!
One could say that the GOP is in a state where it could be declared RIP–Rest in Peace!