The conservative Republicans who control that party today are sometimes termed radicals, because they seek to change the status quo with regard to social and economic fairness, a consensus that has evolved from a Republican president, Theodore Roosevelt, through the terms of Republican and Democratic presidents to 2012.
It is interesting to look back to the Civil War at the accomplishments of congressmen who actually were called radical Republicans during that era and in history books.
On abolition of slavery, they were out in front of President Abraham Lincoln, who was cautiously using his political skills to keep the strategic border states of Maryland, Kentucky and Missouri in the Union before he would commit to issuing his Emancipation Proclamation for slaves in the states in rebellion.
With traitorous Southern Democrats gone from Congress, in 1865 and in several following years the radical Republicans pushed through three constitutional amendments that: outlawed slavery in all states; made former slaves citizens entitled to all the rights of citizens; and declared, specifically, that the right of citizens to vote shall not be denied or abridged.
Further, they enacted a series of laws to enforce those guarantees against violent voter intimidation by terrorist organizations such as the Ku Klux Klan.
That was then.
In 2012, behind a smokescreen of safeguarding an honest ballot, Republican state legislatures north and south are accused of enacting voter identification laws crafted to make it more difficult for likely Democrats especially black citizens to vote.
This is now.
John N. Rippey