The Republican Party, commonly referred to as the GOP (abbreviation for Grand Old Party), is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States, the other being its historic rival, the Democratic Party.
There have been 18 Republican presidents, the first being Abraham Lincoln, who served from 1861 to 1865, when he was assassinated, and the most recent being George W. Bush, who served from 2001 to 2009. The latest Republican presidential nominee is former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who lost in 2012 to incumbent Democrat Barack Obama. Businessman and reality television personality Donald Trump is the presumptive Republican nominee for the 2016 election.
The party is named after republicanism, the dominant value during the American Revolution. Founded by anti-slavery activists, modernists, ex-Whigs, and ex-Free Soilers in 1854, the Republicans dominated politics nationally and in the majority of northern States for most of the period between 1860 and 1932.
Its current ideology is American conservatism. That contrasts with the Democrats' modern liberalism. The Republican Party's platform involves support for free market capitalism, free enterprise, business, a strong national defense, deregulation, restrictions on labor unions, social-conservative policies (particularly opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage), and traditional values, usually with a Judeo-Christian ethical foundation. Once dominant in the North-East and the Midwest, the party's core support now comes from the South and the Mountain West, as well as conservative Catholics and evangelicals across the country.
In the 114th United States Congress, Republicans have their largest majority in the House of Representatives since the 1928 election and a majority of seats in the Senate. The party also holds a majority of governorships and state legislatures. Specifically, 68 out of 98 partisan state legislative chambers have Republican majorities.
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