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This alternate history related article is a stub. You can help by expanding it.The National Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties of the United States of America, and has traditionally adopted a platform of economic conservatism and a social moderatism. The National Party as it stands today traces its roots back to William Clark, whom they consider their founder and icon.
Traditionally, the National Party has been called "the party of the Presidency," due to the trend during the 20th century of the Nationalists dominating the executive branch of the United States government while their opposition, the Democratic Party, has been called "the party of the Congress," due to their dominance of the legislative branch. This has resulted in what is often called the "divided government theory" or the "enforced separation of powers," due to the tradition of separate ideologies in control of separate duties of the United States government. In the 112th Congress, however, the National Party holds majorities in both houses of Congress in opposition to President Bruce Springsteen, a Democrat.
History of the National Party
Ideology and Political Positions
The National Party has often been described as a "progressive conservative" party, in that it promotes socially moderate - and at times liberal - policies while adhering to strongly conservative fiscal and economic ideologies while seeking to limit, curtain or cut the size of government.
Limits on Size of Government and Balance of Powers
The Nationalist ideology, which stems back to William Clark and Henry Clay, believes thoroughly that the federal government's role is the maintenance of the federal union, and not the interference in the individual state unless said state threatens the safety of the Union. As such, Nationalists have encouraged the somewhat paradoxical practice of limiting the bureaucracy while increasing military spending and the size of the military. The Nationalist connection to the military stems from the "military culture" of the mid-to-late 19th century, in which Nationalist governments expanded the role of the military in the federal government, partially to enforce laws guided at alleviating the slavery debate.
The National Party, partially thanks to its alignment with the military, endorses a strong executive branch that "leads the Congress" instead of deferring to legislators - in this way, the Nationalists are often attributed with instituting the "Imperial Presidency" or the "cult of the Presidency" by assigning importance to the executive authority. For this reason, Nationalists have often been seen as making stronger Governors and Presidents throughout the 20th century, as opposed to Democrats, who have traditionally used state legislatures and the Congress as their bastions of power. The National Party believes that the Supreme Court should interpret the Constitution strictly in terms of the legal basis of laws, and are generally opposed to judicial activism and legislating from the bench.
Marriage and Abortion
Nationalists have, since the issues became prominent in the 1960's, supported a state's right to legislate on the legality of abortion and same-sex marriage. Many historians and political experts have cited this as a political tool for liberal-minded Nationalist Presidents such as Dick Van Dyke or Elizabeth Shannon, who supported a woman's right to choose but did not want to anger the influential socially conservative wing of the party, or for Presidents opposed to abortion and gay rights, such as Clyde Dawley and Mitt Romney, to avoid angering the moderates and liberals in the party who had pushed for the civil rights movement. A Gallup poll suggested that in 2004, 43% of Nationalist voters supported same-sex marriage, while only 34% supported abortion, although as many as 81% supported a state's right to choose both.
Nationalist administrations (i.e. Van Dyke, Dawley and Redford) have vetoed federal attempts to ban or assume precedence on these types of issues, and have also passed legislation guaranteeing the state's sovereignty (Shannon, Romney) and successfully lobbied in Supreme Court showdowns such as attempts to both ban and permanently guarantee abortion during Dawley's administration.
National Defense and International Policy
The National Party has, thanks to its alignment with the military, often been considered the party with a strength in national defense and many military members to this day self-identify as Nationalists.