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Social Democracy of America

The Social Democracy of America (SDA) party, founded in 1897, played a significant role in the early 20th-century American political landscape. The SDA is one of the earliest socialist organizations in the United States of America, predated only by the Socialist Labor Party. The SDA emerged from the broader context of the Progressive Era, a period marked by social and political reform efforts in the United States. Led by prominent figures such as Eugene V. Debs, Victor L. Berger, and Morris Hillquit, the SDA aimed to promote socialist ideals and address the pressing issues of the time, including labor rights, income inequality, and workers' living conditions.

One of the key milestones in the SDA's history was its involvement in the formation of the Socialist Party of America (SPA) in 1901. The SDA was instrumental in uniting various socialist factions under the banner of the SPA, which would become a significant force in American politics in the early 20th century. The SPA's platform advocated for a range of progressive policies, including workers' rights, public ownership of key industries, and social welfare programs.

Throughout its existence, the SDA and later the SPA, enjoyed a level of success at the municipal and state levels, with socialist candidates winning seats in city councils, state legislatures, and even Congress. Eugene V. Debs, in particular, became a prominent figure as the SPA's presidential candidate, running five times between 1900 and 1920, with his campaigns rallying support from a broad cross-section of the American population.