This blog explores the history of Phoenix, Arizona and a little bit of Los Angeles and San Francisco, California

Progressive Arizona, Republican or Democrat


If you're puzzled if Arizona has gone from being a Republican state to a Democratic state, you just have to step back and look at a concept called "Progressivism". Arizona has always been progressive, and it still is. Nothing has changed except the two parties. And the best place to follow that change is with two presidents named Roosevelt.

In 1901, when Theodore Roosevelt became President, he was very progressive. To many, excessively so. To him, the Federal Government had a responsibility to wield the type of great power that had been established by another former Republican President, Abraham Lincoln. Roosevelt signed into law sweeping changes to land reclamation, he created National Parks. In fact, he was so power-mad that he upset a lot of Democrats, who pushed back hard against his Federal Policies. But he didn't care, he had a vision for the country that went beyond the conservative attitude of those who didn't agree with him. He wanted change. In Arizona, he was responsible for the dam that was named after him, and which was built in 1911. Google Dwight Heard and Theodore Roosevelt to see more.

When his cousin, Franklin Roosevelt, became president, as a Democrat, in 1933, he did pretty much the same thing. His progressive attitude used the Federal Government in ways that would have made Teddy seem conservative by comparison. He created many Government agencies to help bring the United States economy back. He created great projects, and of course he was a friend of Arizona. Google Eleanor Roosevelt and Isabella Greenway to see how chummy everything was.

Nowadays, of course, the Democratic party is best known as being in favor of Federal Projects, and the Republicans have become the conservatives. But the spirit of Progressivism remains in Arizona, and it's never wavered.

Valley National Bank - Progressing with Arizona.


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