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Social Democratic Party
Sociaal-democratische Partij
社会民主党 Shèhuì Mínzhǔdǎng
社会民主党 Shakai Minshu-tō
SocialDemocratsLogo.png
Leader Lisa Kelsey Chan
Deputy Leader Rin Fujiwara
Founded 29 January 1920
Merger of Democratic Party
Labour Party
Youth wing Young Social Democrats
LGBT wing SDP Rainbow Alliance
Membership 232,000 (2019)
Ideology Majority:
Social democracy
Social liberalism
Civic nationalism
Factions:
Left-wing populism
Progressivism
Third Way
Political position Centre-left
International affiliation Progressive Alliance
Colour      Red
Slogan A Fair Go for Enderron
Enderronian
Parliament
87 / 150
Prefectural
parliaments
452 / 907
Governors
8 / 18
Premiers
13 / 18
City and municipal mayors
18 / 34

The Social Democratic Party of Enderron (SDPE, branded as the Social Democrats and colloquially known as the SDP or Soc Dems[1]) is a centre-left social democratic political party in Enderron. The party is the one of the two major political parties in Enderronian politics, the other being the Liberal Party of Enderron. The current party leader is Lisa Kelsey Chan, who has been Prime Minister of Enderron since 2015.

The Social Democratic Party has been in government since 2014, after sitting in opposition for three terms starting in 2002. Founded in 1920 as a merger between the Democratic Party of Enderron and Enderronian Labour Party, the Social Democratic Party is the oldest political party in the Enderronian Parliament and longest-existing party in Enderronian history. As of 2020, there have been five periods of Social Democratic government under ten Social Democratic prime ministers.

As an amalgamation of democratic socialist and liberal traditions, the modern SDP espouses the principles of social democracy with elements of social liberalism, progressivism and civic nationalism. It supports a democratic capitalist, mixed-market economy with taxation levied to fund the Enderronian welfare state. It is moderately economically interventionist, and generally supports socially progressive and egalitarian policies such as multiculturalism, social welfare and environmental protection. At various times throughout the party's history, different factions have controlled the leadership and as a result its policies have encompassed a broad spectrum of ideologies. The SDP's support base includes working class voters, ethnic minorities, young people and professionals. The party is traditionally strongest in major cities, especially in central and eastern Enderron.

The Social Democrats' flagship policies and legislative decisions throughout Enderronian history include universal healthcare, republicanism, official multiculturalism and multilingualism, tertiary education reform, carbon pricing, and support of abortion rights, LGBT rights and drug law reform.

The Social Democrats have governed Enderron for all but 16 years since the country became a republic in 1970, making it one of the most electorally successful political parties in the democratic world, and leading to some to refer to it as Enderron's "natural governing party". The party has continuously held at least 40 percent of seats in the federal parliament since 1962, and polled a plurality of votes at every election from 1970 to 2002. It is so dominant at the federal level that there have only been four years since 1970 where a party other than the SDP has governed in majority (2006–2010).

The party currently control 13 prefectural legislatures and 9 gubernatorial offices. Seven prefectures (Kaigan, Miranda, New Colorado, New Plymouth, New Surrey, Sierra and Sylvania) currently have both a SDP governor and premier.

The Social Democratic Party has been a member of the Progressive Alliance since 2015, having previously been a member of Socialist International.

History

Main article: History of the Social Democratic Party of Enderron

Formation

The Social Democratic Party was formed in January 1920, but its roots go considerably further back. The party came about as a merger between the Democratic Party of Enderron and the Enderronian Labour Party. The Democratic Party gained its main support from middle class voters in the cities, while the Labour Party had a working class base, with its support evenly distributed across the country. The Democratic Party was formed in 1898 as a splinter of the British Mariana Liberal Party, while the Labour Party was founded by trade unionists and socialists in 1900 to represent the interests of the growing urban working class.

The Democratic and Labour parties competed against each other for the urban vote during the first two decades of their existence. The Democratic Party was the larger party, and was the main rival to the conservative Enderron People's Party. The Labour Party rose to prominence in the early 1910s, largely taking votes from the Democrats. Labour's rise caused a split in the centre-left urban vote, allowing the EPP to win seats in the cities on minority votes. Combined with malapportionment in favour of rural areas, this left the Democrats and Labour significantly electorally disadvantaged. The combined popular vote of the two parties exceeded that of the EPP at five consecutive general elections (1908, 1911, 1914, 1915 and 1919), yet the EPP was able to form government on all but one of those occasions (1908).

In hopes of countering the EPP's dominance, the Democratic Party sought to join forces with the Labour Party and form a single party. Several rounds of negotiation occurred in late 1919 following the general election. Eventually, Labour agreed to a merger after extracting various concessions from the Democrats, such as trade union representation and core leadership positions, and the Social Democratic Party was formed on 29 January 1920. Erstwhile members of the Democratic and Labour parties made up the bulk of new party. Charles Watson was elected as the SDP's inaugural leader, largely as a compromise between Alec Marshall and Allen Sjoberg, the last leaders of the Democratic and Labour parties respectively, neither of whom wished to serve under the other.

The former Democrats, who became the moderate liberal faction in the new party, saw the merger as a means to unite liberals and leftists into a single opposition force against the conservatives. However, the more radical Labour members used the merger as an opportunity to supplant the liberals as the dominant political force of the left. The new party quickly came to be dominated by working class members and trade unionists, as the labour movement continued to rise. Within months, the moderate liberals, consisting mainly of former Democrats, were relegated to a minority position within the party. Some members left the party and joined the EPP, while others decided to form a new liberal party, which became the New Democratic Party.

After two years as leader, Watson, seen as an uncharismatic and ineffectual leader, resigned and was replaced by Sjoberg. Although Sjoberg was from the Labour side of the merger, he recognised the need to retain liberals and moderates in the party; for some time the EPP had been running a political campaign portraying the SDP as a party infiltrated by radicals and extremists. Under Sjoberg's leadership, strong efforts were made to invite liberals back into the SDP, and the party significantly moderated its policy manifesto to combat fears stoked by the EPP.

With Sjoberg as leader, the Social Democratic Party grew significantly in popular support. In its first electoral test as an amalgamated party, the 1923 election, the Social Democrats swept the EPP from power, shocking many conservatives. While the SDP won 48.4 percent of the popular vote, compared to a combined vote of 47.8 percent won by the Democratic and Labour parties in the 1919 election, with vote splitting no longer an issue, the SDP was able to win 11 seats from the EPP for a total of 39 seats in a 66-seat Legislative Assembly. Sjoberg became Enderron's first Social Democratic prime minister. Conversely, the 12-year EPP government was knocked down to just 21 seats, in one of the worst election defeats in Enderronian history.

Early years in government and opposition

Sjoberg took office during the peak of the Roaring Twenties, a period of economic prosperity and industrial growth across the Western world. As the first SDP government, the Sjoberg Government quickly moved to implement a number of significant reforms. The most significant of these include the implementation of the early beginnings of a social welfare system and a nationally mandated forty-hour work week. The Sjoberg Government also created a state housing scheme to curb homelessness, increased workers' wages and enshrined basic industrial relation laws, including the formation of a court of arbitration. Following pressure from the party's liberal wing, and emboldened by the great societal change of the 1920s, Sjoberg's administration also implemented several progressive social reforms, including further removing barriers to voting for women and ethnic minorities.

However, as a result of increased government spending to fund these new social programs, the Social Democrats gained a rather unsavoury reputation for overspending and less-than-ideal economic management. Conservatives and rural voters also criticised the government for its perceived focus on the urban population, at the expense of the farmers. Another problem was dealing with the unelected, conservative-dominated Legislative Council. Often, a government bill would easily pass the Legislative Assembly due to the SDP's majority, then proceed to fail in the upper house if its members deemed the bill too radical. This political deadlock became a frequent thorn on the side of the Sjoberg Government and contributed to its defeat at the 1926 election. In 1924, he EPP elected George Keeney as its leader, and ran an extensive, and ultimately successful, campaign against the Social Democrats' spending habits and its inability to negotiate with the Legislative Council. In the general election, the SDP's vote slightly increased in the cities, but it suffered a large swing in regional areas. It lost its majority, winning 30 seats while the EPP finished with 33. The EPP was therefore able to form a minority government, bringing the first SDP government to an end.

Sjoberg continued as the leader of the opposition into 1927, but presided over an increasingly divided party room, and was in declining health. He resigned in September 1927 and was succeeded as leader by Daniel Reed, a key figure in the party's moderate wing. Reed, a powerful orator, successfully turned the Social Democrats' political fortunes around, taking advantage of the conservative Keeney Government's inability to revive the now-slowing Enderronian economy. By 1929, it seemed inevitable that Enderron would enter a severe depression as worldwide markets rapidly deteriorated. The worsening economic conditions also put significant pressure on industrial relations. The Keeney Government was overwhelmed by the crisis brought on by the Wall Street Crash of 1929, and lost its plurality in the 1930 election. Meanwhile, the SDP gained a 5 percent swing and two seats, leaving it one seat short of a majority. Reed negotiated with the New Democrats, who won two seats, for a confidence and supply agreement, allowing him to become prime minister.

Taking office during the onset of the Great Depression, the Reed Government was tasked with repairing a spiralling economy. Enderron's debt continued to balloon and the unemployment rate was 16 percent by the end of 1930. Reed's government faced significant limitations on its power to implement its response to the crisis. The non-elected Legislative Council remained hostile to the Social Democrats' economic program, and the government also faced opposition from the conservative boards of financial institutions, such as the Royal Bank of Enderron. Reed and his treasurer and deputy, Andrew Mulherin, were unable to embark on an ambitious plan to revive the Enderronian economy. To prevent the deadlock and curb further economic damage, the Reed Government moved to abolish the Legislative Council, which eventually occurred in April 1931. With a major political obstacle out of the way, Reed implemented a plan to repay foreign debts, provide relief to farmers and create economic stimulus through a public works program. Although bitterly opposed by the EPP opposition and with more radical parts watered down to appease the New Democrats, who held the balance of power, the Social Democrats' economic program was well regarded and helped the country gradually recover from economic disaster.

Reed unexpectedly resigned in March 1934, citing health and personal reasons, and was succeeded by his deputy Mulherin. With Enderron's economy on a slow path to normalcy, Mulherin immediately called an early election, catching the EPP off-guard. In the June election, Mulherin led the Social Democrats to an increased majority; it was the first time the SDP was re-elected to a second term in government.

Ideology

The Social Democratic Party is considered to be a centre-left party. Being formed from a merger between the Democratic and Labour parties, it encompasses both social democratic and social liberal ideologies, though social democracy is the party's main tendency.

Although the Labour Party was the smaller of the two parties that amalgamated to form the Social Democratic Party, the merged party adopted a platform closer to that of Labour rather than of the larger Democratic Party. Its original 1920 policy objective called for the "democratic socialisation of the means of production, distribution and exchange". In practice, the SDP has not implemented such democratic socialist policies since the 1970s, and removed references to socialism from its party manifesto in 1989. Traditionally, the Social Democrats have advocated for increased rights for workers, supported state ownership of major industries, and believed in a strong role for governments in economic and social matters. The early Social Democratic governments of 1923–1926 and 1930–1937 established public works programs to alleviate unemployment, increased wages and enshrined basic industrial relation laws. Enderron, under the governments of Daniel Reed and Andrew Mulherin, were among the first in the Western world to practise Keynesian economics, in response to the Great Depression of the 1930s. Although such policies were considered highly radical at the time, by the end of the decade their benefits had been recognised and similar policy measures adopted by other economies.

After the party lost office in the 1937 election, it commenced a period of 33 years in opposition. During this time, the party began to shift from its hardline interventionist platform and towards more moderate social democratic principles. In its early days, the SDP contained a social liberal wing, as well as a more conservative wing. By the 1940s, the liberal wing had become largely extinct, with many of its members and supporters having moved to the more avowedly liberal New Democratic Party.

Federal party leaders

No. Name Term began Term ended Time in office
1 Charles Watson 29 January 1920 18 June 1922 2 years, 140 days
2 Allen Sjoberg 18 June 1922 15 September 1927 5 years, 89 days
3 Daniel Reed 15 September 1927 21 March 1934 6 years, 187 days
4 Andrew Mulherin 21 March 1934 26 November 1937 3 years, 250 days
5 Robert Fraser Scott 26 November 1937 13 March 1945 7 years, 107 days
6 Peter Vickerson 13 March 1945 29 December 1945 291 days
7 Jeremy Fulton 29 December 1945 8 August 1952 6 years, 223 days
8 Gordon Collins 8 August 1952 30 October 1958 6 years, 83 days
9 Calvin Rhinehart 30 October 1958 17 November 1962 4 years, 18 days
10 Jens Larsson 17 November 1962 16 December 1967 5 years, 29 days
(9) Calvin Rhinehart 16 December 1967 20 May 1979 11 years, 155 days
11 William Watt 20 May 1979 12 November 1979 176 days
12 James Thorpe 12 November 1979 29 October 1986 6 years, 351 days
13 Jeffrey Ruben 29 October 1986 19 June 1987 233 days
14 Helen Vandenberg 19 June 1987 1 December 1997 10 years, 165 days
15 Rick Clarkson 1 December 1997 30 October 2002 4 years, 333 days
16 Jason Huynh 30 October 2002 27 October 2006 3 years, 362 days
17 Tom Woodlands 27 October 2006 3 December 2015 9 years, 37 days
18 Lisa Kelsey Chan 3 December 2015 Incumbent 5 years, 292 days

Deputy party leaders

  1. Allen Sjoberg (1920–1922)
  2. Tom Whiteley (1922–1926)
  3. Daniel Reed (1926–1927)
  4. Andrew Mulherin (1927–1933)
  5. George Coe (1933–1939)
  6. Peter Vickerson (1939–1941, 1944–1945)
  7. Jack Heffrey (1941–1944)
  8. Jeremy Fulton (1945)
  9. Michael Parker (1945–1950)
  10. Everett McCormack (1950–1957)
  11. Max Wharton (1957–1958)
  12. Jens Larsson (1958–1962, 1967–1975)
  13. John Sullivan (1962–1964)
  14. Scott Jackson (1964–1967)
  15. Taylor Colbeck (1975–1981)
  16. Phil Costello (1981–1986)
  17. Helen Vandenberg (1986–1987)
  18. Rick Segal (1987–1990)
  19. Kim Hernandez (1990–1995, 1997–2002)
  20. Rick Clarkson (1995–1997)
  21. Tom Woodlands (2002–2006)
  22. Emma Villegas (2006–2011)
  23. Lisa Kelsey Chan (2011–2015)
  24. Rin Fujiwara (2015–present)

Election results

Parliament

Election Seats won ± Total votes % Position Government Leader
1923
39 / 66
Increase2.png 11 1,172,158 48.35% Increase2.png 1st Majority
government
Allen Sjoberg
1926
30 / 66
Decrease2.png 9 1,100,005 43.78% Decrease2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
1930
32 / 65
Increase2.png 2 1,332,341 48.85% Increase2.png 1st Minority
government
Daniel Reed
1934
40 / 68
Increase2.png 8 1,531,840 50.29% Steady2.png 1st Majority
government
Andrew Mulherin
1937
26 / 70
Decrease2.png 14 1,292,052 38.70% Decrease2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
1940
22 / 70
Decrease2.png 4 1,194,845 36.53% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Robert Fraser Scott
1945
27 / 70
Increase2.png 5 886,323 40.24% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Peter Vickerson
1946
17 / 75
Decrease2.png 10 898,472 33.15% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Jeremy Fulton
1950
36 / 100
Increase2.png 22 1,237,249 38.11% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
1954
44 / 100
Increase2.png 8 1,910,651 45.90% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Gordon Collins
1958
33 / 100
Decrease2.png 11 1,807,123 40.49% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
1962
40 / 100
Increase2.png 7 2,158,652 43.66% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Calvin Rhinehart
1966
55 / 125
Increase2.png 20 2,171,992 41.03% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Jens Larsson
1970
94 / 125
Increase2.png 39 5,920,017 55.51% Increase2.png 1st Majority
government
Calvin Rhinehart
1974
77 / 125
Decrease2.png 17 5,500,739 48.26% Steady2.png 1st Majority
government
1978
67 / 125
Decrease2.png 10 4,836,238 40.24% Steady2.png 1st Majority
government
1982
70 / 125
Increase2.png 3 5,451,793 43.96% Steady2.png 1st Majority
government
James Thorpe
1986
54 / 125
Decrease2.png 16 4,251,729 32.21% Decrease2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
1990
72 / 140
Increase2.png 18 5,341,043 38.57% Increase2.png 1st Majority
government
Helen Vandenberg
1994
98 / 140
Increase2.png 26 7,111,971 49.26% Steady2.png 1st Majority
government
1998
88 / 140
Decrease2.png 10 6,994,427 47.09% Steady2.png 1st Majority
government
Rick Clarkson
2002
69 / 150
Decrease2.png 19 6,361,372 41.47% Decrease2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
2006
61 / 150
Decrease2.png 8 5,730,576 35.10% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Jason Huynh
2010
65 / 150
Increase2.png 4 6,162,007 36.40% Steady2.png 2nd Official
Opposition
Tom Woodlands
2014
74 / 150
Increase2.png 9 6,391,695 35.52% Increase2.png 1st Minority
government
2018
87 / 150
Increase2.png 13 7,113,298 37.89% Steady2.png 1st Majority
government
Lisa Kelsey Chan
2022
78 / 194
Decrease2.png 9 34.56% Steady2.png 1st Coalition
government

President

Election Candidate First preference Two-candidate-preferred Result
President Vice President Total votes % Total votes %
1970 Peter Hannon David Barr 2,949,402 27.50% (#3)
 
Lost
1976 Roy Bartley Andrew Gunderman 5,004,626 44.65% (#2)
 
5,450,727 48.63% (#2)
 
Lost
1982 Roy Bartley Hubert Dykstra 3,112,323 27.84% (#2)
 
Lost
1988 Calvin Rhinehart T. K. C. Wong 5,477,925 45.14% (#1)
 
6,867,430 56.59% (#1)
 
Won
1994 Katelyn Mayfield Theodore Trent 5,201,893 38.25% (#1)
 
6,488,426 47.71% (#2)
 
Lost
2000 Jason Calderon Christine Miyamoto 5,439,020 37.64% (#2)
 
6,723,635 46.53% (#2)
 
Lost
2006 Helen Vandenberg Martin Yun Langley 6,042,380 40.21% (#1)
 
8,102,590 53.92% (#1)
 
Won
2012 Martin Yun Langley Tim Preston 5,525,209 32.48% (#2)
 
8,270,802 48.62% (#2)
 
Lost
2018 Roxanne Chen Aaron Burnett 5,581,042 31.54% (#2)
 
8,038,895 45.43% (#2)
 
Lost

Prefectural branches

Party Seats Leader Status
Social Democratic Party of Avalon
11 / 35
Joyce Wilkie Official Opposition
Cooksland Social Democratic Party
47 / 89
Andrew Winston Majority government
Flinders Social Democratic Party
14 / 52
Alicia Blumstein Official Opposition
Social Democratic Party of Greenberg
11 / 25
Randy Koh Official Opposition
Social Democratic Party of Janszoon
25 / 57
Jonathan Hayhurst Official Opposition
Kaigan Social Democratic Party
20 / 43
Aurelia Kim Minority government
Social Democratic Party of Lawrencia
9 / 33
Sue Nakamura Official Opposition
Longshan Social Democratic Party
35 / 58
Miles Liu Majority government
Miranda Social Democratic Party
19 / 37
Dean Sheehan Majority government
New Colorado Social Democratic Party
27 / 35
Natalie Takayama Majority government
New Plymouth Social Democratic Party
27 / 54
Kimberley Lau Minority government
Social Democratic Party of New Surrey
44 / 74
Randall Agrawal Majority government
Plymouth Social Democratic Party
38 / 61
Bruce Sun Majority government
Social Democratic Party of Sierra
10 / 25
Cathy Rathburn Minority government
Sylvania Social Democratic Party
16 / 29
Sarah Petinos Majority government
Tojima Social Democratic Party
26 / 64
Jason Calderon Minority government
Social Democratic Party of Wentworth
52 / 91
Jennifer Armstrong Majority government
Westhaven Social Democratic Party
21 / 41
Adrian Steele Majority government

References

  1. Dutch: Sociaal-democraten
    Chinese: 社民党 Shèmíndǎng
    Japanese: 社民党 Shamintō
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