The History of the Party of the Right

The Party of the Right was formed in the Spring of 1953 by dissatisfied members of the original Conservative Party of the Yale Political Union (later rechristened as the Independent Party) after that Party had endorsed Adlai Stevenson as “the conservative candidate for President.”

By the end of the 1950s many of the Party’s enduring Traditions had already been established, although it was not until the 1960s that the Party really began to understand itself as “Conservatism reborn in Brotherhood.” It was during this time that the Party Project of making Great Men really took off.

Due to a membership that included Conservatives of every stripe, the Party found a dynamic tension between Libertarians and Traditionalists in the early 1970s that has been its hallmark for decades. Thus, the debates that animate American Conservatism find a permanent home in the Party of the Right.

Membership in the Party of the Right is elective and lasts “for life at least.” Despite this promise, certain Members disaffected by the political process left to form both the Tory and Conservative Parties of the Yale Political Union in 1971 and 1996 respectively. Nevertheless, the Party has continued to prosper.

The Party of the Right has always maintained strong ties with its alumni membership and recently celebrated its Fiftieth Anniversary, for which scores of alumni returned to Yale.

Much of Party History is reserved to the Oral Tradition, although a good deal of it is largely unclear.