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Democratic Party (United States) facts for kids

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Democratic Party
Chairperson Jaime Harrison
Governing body Democratic National Committee
U.S. President Joe Biden
U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer
House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries
Founders
Founded January 8, 1828; 196 years ago (1828-01-08)
Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
Preceded by Democratic-Republican Party
Headquarters 430 South Capitol St. SE,
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Student wing
  • High School Democrats of America
  • College Democrats of America
Youth wing Young Democrats of America
Women's wing National Federation of Democratic Women
Overseas wing Democrats Abroad
Membership (2023) Decrease 45,916,356
Ideology
Colors      Blue
Seats in the Senate
48 / 100
Seats in the House of Representatives
213 / 435
State governorships
23 / 50
Seats in state upper chambers
857 / 1,973
Seats in state lower chambers
2,425 / 5,413
Territorial governorships
4 / 5
Seats in territorial upper chambers
31 / 97
Seats in territorial lower chambers
9 / 91
Election symbol
Democratic Disc.svg

The Democratic Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States. Since the 1850s, its main political rival has been the Republican Party.

The Democratic Party was founded in 1828. Martin Van Buren of New York played the central role in building the coalition of state organizations that formed a new party as a vehicle to elect Andrew Jackson of Tennessee. The Democratic Party is often called the world's oldest active political party. The party supported expansive presidential power, the interests of slave states, agrarianism, and expansionism, while opposing a national bank and high tariffs. It split in 1860 over slavery and won the presidency only twice in the fifty years between 1860 and 1910, although it won the popular vote a total of four times in that period. In the late 19th century, it continued to oppose high tariffs and had fierce internal debates on the gold standard. In the early 20th century, it supported progressive reforms and opposed imperialism, with Woodrow Wilson winning the White House in 1912 and 1916.

Since Franklin D. Roosevelt was elected president in 1932, the Democratic Party has promoted a social liberal platform that includes support for Social Security and unemployment insurance. Barack Obama oversaw the party's passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010. During Joe Biden's presidency, the party has adopted an increasingly progressive economic agenda.

Beginning with the time of the New Deal, the party's traditional coalition consisted of the working class, Catholics, mainline Protestants, Jews, Blacks, intellectuals, and organized labor.

Philosophy and role in government

Democrats, also sometimes called the left, liberals or progressives make up one of the two main political parties in the United States. A mostly Democratic state is sometimes called a blue state. This comes from the party’s main color, which is blue, referring to a state supporting ‘blue’ candidates.

Democrats believe in a strong government with social assistance programs to help members of society. They prefer diplomatic solutions to conflicts, and take generally multilateralist views on trade, believing that trade must be free, but fair to protect American workers, consumers, local communities, and the environment. Some Democrats are economic centrists.

Socially, most Democrats are pro-immigration and support marriage equality.

Democratic Beliefs

Currently, the Democratic Party is identified by progressivism, liberalism, and left-wing policies.

Not all Democrats believe in the same thing, but generally these are the things many Democrats support:

  • Progressive income tax.
  • Higher corporate taxes and recapturing income from overseas profits.
  • Spending on business, education, infrastructure, clean-energy.
  • Expanding spending on government programs.
  • Ending the death penalty.
  • Gun regulations to prevent citizens from hurting themselves and others with firearms.
  • Support Same-sex marriage.
  • Universal healthcare.
  • Declare Washington D.C. an official state.
  • Helping students go to college or university for free without having to pay back the government.
  • Allow undocumented immigrants in the U.S. to stay, pay taxes, and oppose mass deportation.

Most support for Democrats comes from states in the Northeast, Upper Midwest, and the Pacific Coast, as well as from the state of Hawaii.

Symbols

The symbol of the Democratic Party is the donkey. Since the election of 2000, the color blue has become a symbol for Democrats.

Historically, Thomas Jefferson, whom the party claims as its founder, has been often seen as symbols of the Democratic Party, particularly emphasized in the annual celebrations of Jefferson Day Dinners held since the days of Andrew Jackson. As such, the Democratic Party is also often referred to as the “Party of Jefferson.”

List of democratic presidents

# President Portrait State Term start Term end Years in office
7 Andrew Jackson (1767–1845) Andrew jackson headFXD.jpg Tennessee March 4, 1829 March 4, 1837 8 years, 0 days
8 Martin Van Buren (1782–1862) Francis Alexander - Martin Van Buren - Google Art Project.jpg New York March 4, 1837 March 4, 1841 4 years, 0 days
11 James K. Polk (1795–1849) James Knox Polk by George Peter Alexander Healy (detail), 1846 - DSC03261.JPG Tennessee March 4, 1845 March 4, 1849 4 years, 0 days
14 Franklin Pierce (1804–1869) George Peter Alexander Healy - Franklin Pierce - Google Art Project.jpg New Hampshire March 4, 1853 March 4, 1857 4 years, 0 days
15 James Buchanan (1791–1868) JamesBuchanan crop.jpg Pennsylvania March 4, 1857 March 4, 1861 4 years, 0 days
17 Andrew Johnson (1808–1875) President Andrew Johnson.jpg Tennessee April 15, 1865 March 4, 1869 3 years, 323 days
22 Grover Cleveland (1837–1908) StephenGroverCleveland.jpg New York March 4, 1885 March 4, 1889 8 years, 0 days
24 March 4, 1893 March 4, 1897
28 Woodrow Wilson (1856–1924) Thomas Woodrow Wilson, Harris & Ewing bw photo portrait, 1919.jpg New Jersey March 4, 1913 March 4, 1921 8 years, 0 days
32 Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882–1945) 1944 Official Campaign Portrait session (8145288140).jpg New York March 4, 1933 April 12, 1945 12 years, 39 days
33 Harry S. Truman (1884–1972) TRUMAN 58-766-06 (cropped).jpg Missouri April 12, 1945 January 20, 1953 7 years, 283 days
35 John F. Kennedy (1917–1963) John F. Kennedy, White House color photo portrait.jpg Massachusetts January 20, 1961 November 22, 1963 2 years, 306 days
36 Lyndon B. Johnson (1908–1973) 37 Lyndon Johnson 3x4.jpg Texas November 22, 1963 January 20, 1969 5 years, 59 days
39 Jimmy Carter (born 1924) Carter cropped.jpg Georgia January 20, 1977 January 20, 1981 4 years, 0 days
42 Bill Clinton (born 1946) Bill Clinton.jpg Arkansas January 20, 1993 January 20, 2001 8 years, 0 days
44 Barack Obama (born 1961) President Barack Obama, 2012 portrait crop.jpg Illinois January 20, 2009 January 20, 2017 8 years, 0 days
46 Joe Biden (born 1942) Joe Biden presidential portrait (cropped).jpg Delaware January 20, 2021 Incumbent 3 years, 181 days

List of famous Democratic politicians

Independents who caucus with Democrats

List of former democrats

Ronald Reagan 1981 presidential portrait
President Ronald Reagan

Related pages

Images for kids

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Partido Demócrata (Estados Unidos) para niños

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