Abraham Lincoln & the Republicans on Labor Day*

On a day when we honor labor, there will be no labor here. Instead, a thoughtful quote from one of the country's greatest presidents.

"Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if Labor had not first existed. Labor is superior to capital, and deserves much the higher consideration."

— President Abraham Lincoln

*Note the evolution of the Republican party since Lincoln was its leader. Originally, the Republicans were scheduled to dishonor this Labor Day holiday by starting their convention on a day usually set aside to honor workers by allowing them to have the day off. If the Republicans had held their full schedule of events today, as planned, thousands of workers in Minnesota would have missed their holiday. Horribly, it took Hurricane Gustav to get the Republicans to scale back their original plans. As a historic note, President Grover Cleveland, a Democrat, was the first president to endorse the idea of a Labor Day holiday. He proposed it during his first term and it became law in his second term.

(Political poster graphic © copyright The Project for the Old American Century, which allows the use of its material with the appropriate credit.)

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