Anna Falkner

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Regional Research Institute

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Regional Research Institute


The current political system is a compilation of the events of political party formation and transformation that have occurred over the last two hundred years. The following research focuses on the development of the first political system in the United States. The rivalry between the Federalists and Republicans led to the modern party system. The system developed in the 1790s, matured by 1800, and then declined by 1810s. This research focuses on governor political affiliations and makes observations about regional patterns. The research objectives are: identification of party affiliation, identification of method of election, and regional analysis of party strength for governors. The United States is divided into four regions: New England, Middle Atlantic, South, and West. The regional analysis led to discoveries about why the Republican party began to dominate the country. The Republican party did not have much support in the mid 1790s, but their support slowly grew. The Federalists lost control in most areas, except for the New England region. By 1824, the last year of the study, only one governor was a Federalist. This research explains the Federalist decline and the eventual decline of the Republicans. This is the first era of United States political parties and is often termed "the experimental system."