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Sunday, September 11, 2011

Lincoln and the Founding of the Republican Party

"Myths and Misinformation" is a boxed feature in our textbook. A recent example involves Lincoln, as Jake Tapper writes at ABC:
“He gives a good speech, but he’s loose with the facts. He called Abraham Lincoln the ‘founder’ of the Republican Party. Nope. Lincoln was not the founder of the party; he wasn’t even the first Republican nominee (John Fremont was, in 1856). Lincoln was, of course, the first Republican to be elected president.”
- Jay Carney, TIME Magazine bureau chief, on Mike Huckabee’s GOP Convention Speech, September 3, 2008

“We all remember Abraham Lincoln as the leader who saved our union. Founder of the Republican Party.”

- President Barack Obama, address to Congress, September 8, 2011

The remark was apparently an ad-lib. PBS originally did not include the error in its transcript, but after bloggers noted the omission, put it in. PBS added this editor's note: "The original transcript provided on this page, as was noted, reflected the president's remarks as prepared for delivery and released by the White House. This transcript has been updated to reflect the remarks as delivered and released by the White House." This case illustrates a lesson about research: remarks "as prepared" can sometimes differ from remarks "as delivered."