The rise of the Republican Party from its mid-twentieth-century minority status between 1960 and 1980 had a profound impact on American politics that is still being felt in the second decade of the twenty-first century. The GOP would move to the right in its pursuit of electoral ascendancy, but considerable debate within the party surrounded this shift and its success was far from certain. Ultimately, however, this development would culminate in the transformational election of Ronald Reagan as president in 1980.Seeking a New Majority assembles an international group of scholars to move beyond the ideas and activities of party leaders who have hitherto received the bulk of historical attention. It illuminates how the Republican Party expanded its regional base, especially in the South, appealed to new constituencies ranging from blue-collar workers to Christian fundamentalists, and enhanced the political appeal of conservatism. It also examines how Republicans engaged in a remarkable organisational and intellectual mobilisation to challenge Democratic Party dominance--in search of a new majority.
Robert Mason is Senior Lecturer in History at the University of Edinburgh, UK and author of The Republican Party and American Politics from Hoover to Reagan.Iwan Morgan is Professor of US Studies at University College London, UK and author of The Age of Deficits.