Obama and the Democrats: Championing the middle class
Posted on: 05:21 PM IST Nov 05, 2012
Washington: Supported largely by the Indian-American community, President Barack Obama's Democratic Party with the longest continuous operation in the US has promoted a social liberal and progressive platform since the 1930s. Led by Obama, the 15th Democratic president of the United States seeking re-election on the slogan of "Forward", the party says it is "focused on building an economy that lasts-an economy that lifts up all Americans" as it believes that "we're greater together than we are on our own." That's why Democrats are working to advance issues like job creation, education, health care, and clean energy, says the party that claims to have led the fight for civil rights, health care, Social Security, workers' rights, and women's rights for more than 200 years.
In the current Congress, elected in 2010, the Democrats hold a majority in the 100-member Senate with 51 own members plus two independents who caucus with them to Republicans' 47. In the 435-member House it's in a minority with 190 seats to Republicans' 240. The party currently also has governors in 20 of the 50 states, including California where Kamala Harris, daughter of an Indian mother and African American father, became the first woman and the first South Asian to be elected Attorney General in 2010.
The Democratic Party traces its origins to the inspiration of Democratic-Republican Party, founded by Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and other influential opponents of the Federalists in 1792. That party also inspired the Whigs and modern Republicans. Symbolised by a donkey, the modern Democratic Party truly arose in the 1830s, with the election of Andrew Jackson as the seventh President of the United States, who was depicted riding and directing a donkey representing the Party in a political cartoon published in 1837
The party paints the Nov 6 election as a choice "between two fundamentally different paths" for the country with "Democrats offering America the opportunity to move our country forward by creating an economy built to last and built from the middle out."