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Consumer Law & Policy Blog: “Can the RNC forbid the use of an elephant or “GOP” to identfy Republicans?“:

Although these references have been in popular use since the 1870’s, and owe more to Thomas Nast than to the Republicans themselves, back in the 1997 and 1995, respectively, the RNC trademarked the initials “GOP” and a stylized elephant showing three stars across its body. Relying on these trademarks, the RNC has been trying to suppress the use of the initials or an elephant to refer to Republicans generally, such as in the images that appear above and on the left.