This Day in History… Republicans Pass Anti-KKK Act – Outlawing Democratic Terrorist Groups
On September 28, 1868, a mob of Democrats massacred nearly 300 African-American Republicans in Opelousas, Louisiana. The savagery began when racist Democrats attacked a newspaper editor, a white Republican and schoolteacher for ex-slaves. Several African-Americans rushed to the assistance of their friend, and in response, Democrats went on a “Negro hunt,” killing every African-American (all of whom were Republicans) in the area they could find. (Via Grand Old Partisan)
On April 20, 1871, at the urging of President Ulysses Grant, Congress passed the Ku Klux Klan Act. Also known as the third Enforcement Act, the bill was a controversial expansion of federal authority designed to give the federal government additional power to protect voters. The act established penalties in the form of fines and jail time for attempts to deprive citizens of equal protection under the laws and gave the President the authority to use federal troops and suspend the writ of habeas corpus in ensuring that civil rights were upheld.
Founded as a fraternal organization by Confederate veterans in Pulaski, Tennessee, in 1866, the Ku Klux Klan soon became a paramilitary group devoted to the overthrow of Republican governments in the South and the reassertion of white supremacy. Through murder, kidnapping, and violent intimidation, Klansmen sought to secure Democratic victories in elections by attacking black voters and, less frequently, white Republican leaders.
In related news – Republicans led the charge on civil rights and women’s rights.
September 22, 1862: Republican President Abraham Lincoln issues preliminary Emancipation Proclamation
January 1, 1863: Emancipation Proclamation, implementing the Republicans’ Confiscation Act of 1862, takes effect
The Democratic Party continues to Support Slavery.
February 9, 1864: Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton deliver over 100,000 signatures to U.S. Senate supporting Republicans’ plans for constitutional amendment to ban slavery
June 15, 1864: Republican Congress votes equal pay for African-American troops serving in U.S. Army during Civil War
June 28, 1864: Republican majority in Congress repeals Fugitive Slave Acts
October 29, 1864: African-American abolitionist Sojourner Truth says of President Lincoln: “I never was treated by anyone with more kindness and cordiality than were shown to me by that great and good man”
January 31, 1865: 13th Amendment banning slavery passed by U.S. House with unanimous Republican support, intense Democrat opposition
Republican Party Support: 100% Democratic Party Support: 23%
March 3, 1865: Republican Congress establishes Freedmen’s Bureau to provide health care, education, and technical assistance to emancipated slaves
April 8, 1865: 13th Amendment banning slavery passed by U.S. Senate
Republican support 100% Democrat support 37%
June 19, 1865: On “Juneteenth,” U.S. troops land in Galveston, TX to enforce ban on slavery that had been declared more than two years before by the Emancipation Proclamation
November 22, 1865: Republicans denounce Democrat legislature of Mississippi for enacting “black codes,” which institutionalized racial discrimination
1866: The Republican Party passes the Civil Rights Act of 1866 to protect the rights of newly freed slaves
December 6, 1865: Republican Party’s 13th Amendment, banning slavery, is ratified
*1865: The KKK launches as the “Terrorist Arm” of the Democratic Party
February 5, 1866: U.S. Rep. Thaddeus Stevens (R-PA) introduces legislation, successfully opposed by Democrat President Andrew Johnson, to implement “40 acres and a mule” relief by distributing land to former slaves
April 9, 1866: Republican Congress overrides Democrat President Johnson’s veto; Civil Rights Act of 1866, conferring rights of citizenship on African-Americans, becomes law
April 19, 1866: Thousands assemble in Washington, DC to celebrate Republican Party’s abolition of slavery
May 10, 1866: U.S. House passes Republicans’ 14th Amendment guaranteeing due process and equal protection of the laws to all citizens; 100% of Democrats vote no
June 8, 1866: U.S. Senate passes Republicans’ 14th Amendment guaranteeing due process and equal protection of the law to all citizens; 94% of Republicans vote yes and 100% of Democrats vote no
July 16, 1866: Republican Congress overrides Democrat President Andrew Johnson’s veto of Freedman’s Bureau Act, which protected former slaves from “black codes” denying their rights
July 28, 1866: Republican Congress authorizes formation of the Buffalo Soldiers, two regiments of African-American cavalrymen
July 30, 1866: Democrat-controlled City of New Orleans orders police to storm racially-integrated Republican meeting; raid kills 40 and wounds more than 150
January 8, 1867: Republicans override Democrat President Andrew Johnson’s veto of law granting voting rights to African-Americans in D.C.
July 19, 1867: Republican Congress overrides Democrat President Andrew Johnson’s veto of legislation protecting voting rights of African-Americans
March 30, 1868: Republicans begin impeachment trial of Democrat President Andrew Johnson, who declared: “This is a country for white men, and by God, as long as I am President, it shall be a government of white men”
May 20, 1868: Republican National Convention marks debut of African-American politicians on national stage; two – Pinckney Pinchback and James Harris – attend as delegates, and several serve as presidential electors
1868 (July 9): 14th Amendment passes and recognizes newly freed slaves as U.S. Citizens
Republican Party Support: 94% Democratic Party Support: 0%
September 3, 1868: 25 African-Americans in Georgia legislature, all Republicans, expelled by Democrat majority; later reinstated by Republican Congress
September 12, 1868: Civil rights activist Tunis Campbell and all other African-Americans in Georgia Senate, every one a Republican, expelled by Democrat majority; would later be reinstated by Republican Congress
September 28, 1868: Democrats in Opelousas, Louisiana murder nearly 300 African-Americans who tried to prevent an assault against a Republican newspaper editor
October 7, 1868: Republicans denounce Democratic Party’s national campaign theme: “This is a white man’s country: Let white men rule”
October 22, 1868: While campaigning for re-election, Republican U.S. Rep. James Hinds (R-AR) is assassinated by Democrat terrorists who organized as the Ku Klux Klan
November 3, 1868: Republican Ulysses Grant defeats Democrat Horatio Seymour in presidential election; Seymour had denounced Emancipation Proclamation
December 10, 1869: Republican Gov. John Campbell of Wyoming Territory signs FIRST-in-nation law granting women right to vote and to hold public office
February 3, 1870: The US House ratifies the 15th Amendment granting voting rights to all Americans regardless of race
Republican support: 97% Democrat support: 3%
February 25, 1870: Hiram Rhodes Revels becomes the first Black seated in the US Senate, becoming the First Black in Congress and the first Black Senator.
May 19, 1870: African American John Langston, law professor and future Republican Congressman from Virginia, delivers influential speech supporting President Ulysses Grant’s civil rights policies
May 31, 1870: President U.S. Grant signs Republicans’ Enforcement Act, providing stiff penalties for depriving any American’s civil rights
June 22, 1870: Republican Congress creates U.S. Department of Justice, to safeguard the civil rights of African-Americans against Democrats in the South
September 6, 1870: Women vote in Wyoming, in FIRST election after women’s suffrage signed into law by Republican Gov. John Campbell
December 12, 1870: Republican Joseph Hayne Rainey becomes the first Black duly elected by the people and the first Black in the US House of Representatives
In 1870 and 1871, along with Revels (R-Miss) and Rainey (R-SC), other Blacks were elected to Congress from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina and Virginia – all Republicans.
A Black Democrat Senator didn’t show up on Capitol Hill until 1993. The first Black Congressman was not elected until 1935.
February 28, 1871: Republican Congress passes Enforcement Act providing federal protection for African-American voters
March 22, 1871: Spartansburg Republican newspaper denounces Ku Klux Klan campaign to eradicate the Republican Party in South Carolina
April 20, 1871: Republican Congress enacts the (anti) Ku Klux Klan Act, outlawing Democratic Party-affiliated terrorist groups which oppressed African-Americans
Read the rest here.