Republicans were against slavery since the party was founded, before Lincoln. The southern Democrats switched, and only southern Democrats. Southern Democrats including LBJ were adamantly racist; they flipped for pure political strategy. Northern Democrats not so, e.g. Hubert Humphrey (D-MN) and Emmanuel Celler (D-NY) and Mike Mansfield (D-MT.) Northern Democrats favored equal rights. It was Republicans who fought for the right of women to vote, the end of slavery, the right of blacks and Indians to vote, and the several civil rights acts. They have not changed. Equal rights under the law was a GOP founding principle. In 1856, before the Civil War, Republican Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts was beaten senseless on the floor of the Senate after a fiery speech against slavery. He was beaten by a southern Democrat U.S. Representative Preston Brooks of South Carolina. Sumner never fully recovered. So-called progressive Democrat President Woodrow Wilson also fought against all of the above civil rights, until he flipped to avoid losing his re-election. Republican President Eisenhower pushed through the civil rights act of 1957 written by Democrat Representative Emanuel Celler of New York and sent federal troops to Arkansas to enforce integration of public schools. The civil rights acts of ’64 and ’65 that were passed during LBJ’s administration had been previously sponsored by JFK but were written and pushed through by Senator Everitt Dirksen and northern Democrats and all Republicans.
Republicans have not switched sides on civil rights. Southern Democrats flipped sides on slavery, voting rights and many other issues and every time they attempt to re-write history with the propaganda that Republicans are not for equal rights. Democrats are very good liars apparently.
Democrats one hundred fifty years ago, fifty years ago, and today vote every time to keep people enslaved. Only their method of enslavement has changed. Today, Democrats vote consistently to enslave minorities and poor people to the government by making these people dependent on a network of welfare programs that are nearly impossible to get off. It has always been hard to leave the plantation if you are dependent on the master. The benefits of today’s myriad welfare programs pay more than the entry level jobs available to these people. These programs are growing rapidly, which means slavery to the government is growing rapidly…thanks to Democrats. Families live their entire lives on welfare, slaves to the state. In return, most of them vote for Democrats. They are addicts, slaves. Just like many of the slaves in the old south and old north, many do not want to leave the plantation.
But today, the population of government slaves is much more diverse. Equal slavery for all. Kumbahya.