AN UNEASY ALLIANCE
The Republican Party, plagued by philosophical, geographical, and socioeconomic differences among its members, struggled through an identity crisis in the late 1950s and early 1960s that eventually shifted power internally from liberals to conservatives. The battle could not have been won, however, without the assistance of right-wingers outside the party structure. Uniting to form a more effective force, numerous conservative intellectuals, local groups, and journalists worked together to promote conservatives within the political system. Realizing that they needed each other to achieve power, right-wing politicians and ideologues formed an uneasy alliance based on political expediency.
This alliance created the potential for a vibrant conservative movement, but the new unity of the various strains of conservatism was tenuous at best. Traditionalists, libertarians, anticommunists, and right-wing politicians worked together when it suited their purposes but remained firmly committed to their individual agendas. In the 1950s and early 1960s, conservatives recognized the benefits of cooperation and joined forces to create a stronger conservative movement, but their lack of practical experi