The democrats are commonly represented by a donkey and the republicans by an elephant and there's many articles that will explain which cartoonist created the associations in the 1870s. What I haven't found an explanation for though, is "Why this specific donkey? Why this specific elephant?"
The specific image of the US flag colour red/blue stylised animals the with thick white divider and stars (3 for republicans, 4 for democrats) in the upper half is pretty much universally used. I've found some claims that the Republican party has trademarked this element, which would imply that this icon style came from the Republican party itself and the elephant variant came first. Is this correct? Where did the donkey variant come from?
"Visual consistency with the Republican icon" seems an unlikely goal for anyone setting out to design a Democrat icon for promotional purposes. Was it some media outlet who created the democrat donkey in this style for election reporting?