Stereotypes of Republicans and Democrats held two polls described by Elise Hennigan on the stereotypes used by Democrats to describe Republicans and stereotypes used by Republicans to describe Democrats.

What Republicans think about Democrats and what Democrats think about Republicans are often based on party-promoted clichés rather than on actual policy or ideology. Republican politicians talk about “liberal elites” who are out of touch, arrogant, immoral, science loving atheists. Democratic pundits portray conservatives as ignorant, selfish, greedy, gun loving whites. Surely, there are individuals who fit those stereotypes but the descriptions don’t extend to the ALL Republicans or Democrats any more than any biased stereotype. The polls tried to separate the clichés from actual political beliefs.

Democrats believe that:

  • The federal government can and should work to make everyone’s lives better.
  • Social issues like the environment and human rights are important for everybody in society.
  • We’re not immoral, elitist snowflakes who hate America. We’re patriotic family-oriented Americans.
  • People aren’t looking for handouts but there are times when anybody can need government help to survive.

The stereotypes Democrats find most offensive are listed in the following table.

Democrats 2

Republicans believe that:

  • The federal government is too large and inefficient, and wastes our tax dollars.
  • Regulations stall the economy and hold us back from realizing our full potential.
  • We’re not all bigoted rednecks. We do believe that everybody deserves representation.
  • Government can’t save every individual; they have to work hard and save themselves.

The stereotypes Republicans find most offensive are listed in the following table.

Republicans 2

So, ignoring the character assassination clichés, it seems that Republicans and Democrats have a fundamental difference of opinion about what the role of the Federal government should be. Democrats want it to make everyone’s lives better. Republicans want it to leave us alone so we can make our own lives better. This should come as no surprise; it has been argued for hundreds of years.

The important point is that we should be debating what the federal government should or should not be doing for its citizens and not stereotyping each other. Politicians, parties, and pundits all want to divide us to further their own causes. We should stop taking the bait and do what’s best for all of us by debating policies and not clichés.

1 Comment

  1. The roles of the federal government are explicitly spelled out in The Constitution. All other roles are delegated to the states.Note “promote the general welfare” (not provide) is not defined.


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