The Real Law and Order Party

On Monday, Donald Trump proclaimed himself the “law and order candidate” – resurrecting Richard Nixon’s 1968 campaign rhetoric. More than a century prior, the actual Law and Order Party had electoral success for a brief period in Rhode Island. Formed in the early 1840s in response to the Dorr Rebellion (a movement led by Thomas Dorr that sought the end of property-based suffrage rights in the state), the Law and Order Party essentially replaced the Whigs on the ballot and won the gubernatorial elections of 1843 (James Fenner), 1844 (Fenner), and 1846 (Byron Diman) as well as seats for two U.S. Representatives and one U.S. Senator to the 28th Congress in 1843.

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