John White

Document Type

Honors Project

First Advisor

Dr. David McQuilkin

Degree Award Date

Spring 1996


Newt Gingrich, Southern Politics, Republican Party, 1994 presidential election


American Politics | Political Science


Put simply, the purpose of this paper is to put the 1994 election into historical perspective. However, it is not an indepth analysis of the creation of the 104th Congress. Instead, this paper is a recounting of the events leading up to and culminating with the election of 1994. My thesis is simple: the modern Republican party is dominated by rhetoric and philosophy developed by the opposition to the civil rights movement. I am not trying to say that all Republicans are racist, only that the current (national) GOP ideology was formed in protest of the civil rights movement. Over the course of time, the economic and social aspects of the Republican philosophy became so intertwined with the racial position of anti-segregationist that they cannot be separated in the current political climate, and still paint a racist mental image in the minds of large segments of the population. Given the limited time and scope (and energy) of this project, only presidential elections are studied in detail. Again, the purpose of this paper is the put the 1994 congressional elections in context, not to analyze the 104th Congress or political parties in any one state.