Joeyboy 12
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I have no knowledge what so ever of American politics; it just passes through me (as I don't understand them).
But what I keep on hearing about on the news and American TV shows, is that some people state that they are Republicans. From what I can gather, George Bush was a Republican, so that immediately signals that they aren't exactly the greatest bunch of people. But I could be wrong.
So how do they differ from Democrats? What are their policies and aims?
I've searched the web but I can't find anything that isn't subject to extreme political bias.
Any ideas?
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Nick100
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To briefly summarize:

Ostensibly (that is to say, their rhetoric would suggest that), Republicans generally (although not universally) want a government which does not interfere with the economy very much, but which would be very tough on crime, would discourage homosexuality and other "alternative lifestyles", would prohibit abortion and would essentially enforce traditional morality (particularly when it comes to sexuality). They are allied with the religious right.

Ostensibly, Democrats generally (although again, not universally) want a government which regulates the economy a lot and provides welfare for the citizenry, but do not believe that the government should interfere with people's "lifestyle choices", would permit abortion, gay marriage, etc.

Both parties support a strong military (although the Republicans insist that the Democrats don't for some reason) and both parties' actual policies do not always align with their rhetoric (Republicans will happily bail out banks, Democrats will promise to close Gitmo but won't). Occasionally one party will accuse the other of being racist - historically the Democrats were racist but now that there is a black Democrat as President that seems to be in the past - these days it's more often the Republicans that are accused of being racist.
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prog2djent
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They are essentially the same party, look up general policies and everything matches, maybe a few nuanced differences on economic stance and 1 or 2 social issues.
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Will Lucky
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(Original post by prog2djent)
They are essentially the same party, look up general policies and everything matches, maybe a few nuanced differences on economic stance and 1 or 2 social issues.
To an extent yes, the Democrat Party in say Texas, and the Democrat Party in New York vastly differ in their views. In some places the two parties are exactly the same.
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Made in the USA
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(Original post by Nick100)
To briefly summarize:

Ostensibly (that is to say, their rhetoric would suggest that), Republicans generally (although not universally) want a government which does not interfere with the economy very much, but which would be very tough on crime, would discourage homosexuality and other "alternative lifestyles", would prohibit abortion and would essentially enforce traditional morality (particularly when it comes to sexuality). They are allied with the religious right.

Ostensibly, Democrats generally (although again, not universally) want a government which regulates the economy a lot and provides welfare for the citizenry, but do not believe that the government should interfere with people's "lifestyle choices", would permit abortion, gay marriage, etc.

Both parties support a strong military (although the Republicans insist that the Democrats don't for some reason) and both parties' actual policies do not always align with their rhetoric (Republicans will happily bail out banks, Democrats will promise to close Gitmo but won't). Occasionally one party will accuse the other of being racist - historically the Democrats were racist but now that there is a black Democrat as President that seems to be in the past - these days it's more often the Republicans that are accused of being racist.
I agree with some of what you are saying, but I think you put way too much emphasis on social issues like gay marriage, which is not a important to either party. The parties define themselves on economic issues, not social issues

Watch the upcoming republican and democrat conventions and you'll see that neither party will discuss homosexuality or gay marriage. It's just really not on the radar
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prog2djent
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(Original post by Made in the USA)
I agree with some of what you are saying, but I think you put way too much emphasis on social issues like gay marriage, which is not a important to either party. The parties define themselves on economic issues, not social issues

Watch the upcoming republican and democrat conventions and you'll see that neither party will discuss homosexuality or gay marriage. It's just really not on the radar
The reason the republicans won't discuss gay marriage is because I'd say 90% of republica voters are against it so it is a non issue, as well as the fact any candidate voicing support would be suicidal. The reason the dems aren't discussing it is because Obama has already leant his support, and discussion isn't big either, because a massive portion of democratic voters are African Americans, almost all of them probably christian, and against gay marriage.
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nexttime
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Here in Europe, Republicans are mostly in the news for things like angry protests against universal healthcare, or for saying that we shouldn't teach children to think critically because they might question the bible. By european standards, they are very, very anti-government and very, very religious.

(Original post by Annoying-Mouse)
Democrats are center-left and Republicans are center-right.
You'd seriously call the republicans centre-right? My political knowledge is limited but compared to the UK the US seems to have much lower taxes, no socialised medicine and be far more socially conservative (read: fundamentalist christian but with guns) and a lot more nationalistic (not sure how this fits in). How can the main political parties both be considered centre-right/centre-left?
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liamb109
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The democrats aren't left at all. They're centre right and the Republicans have just gone on the short bus to crazytown.

If you're going to preach about limited government, you don't get to say the government can interfere on gay marriage, abortion, stem cell research and so on and so forth.
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nexttime
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(Original post by liamb109)
If you're going to preach about limited government, you don't get to say the government can interfere on gay marriage, abortion, stem cell research and so on and so forth.
I get confused about that too but there is a simple rule: If it has anything to do with sex the republicans want to control it, basically.
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Arbolus
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(Original post by nexttime)

You'd seriously call the republicans centre-right? My political knowledge is limited but compared to the UK the US seems to have much lower taxes, no socialised medicine and be far more socially conservative (read:christian but with guns) and a lot more nationalistic (not sure how this fits in). How can the main political parties both be considered centre-right/centre-left? Or is it just a flaw of the right-left system?
By American standards I suppose you could call them centre-left/centre right. It's just that the American centre is much further right than most European centres.
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concubine
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Democrats = sometimes okay
Republicans = morons


Source: Fox News.
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liamb109
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(Original post by nexttime)
If it has anything to do with sex the republicans want to control it, is the rule i go by.
Exactly. That and their love of brainwashing kids by controlling what is and isn't taught in schools. And gutting public school systems.
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liamb109
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(Original post by Annoying-Mouse)
Technically, opposing gay marriage = less governmental interference.
No. Allowing the states to decide would be less federal government interference.
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LETSJaM
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You see an american senator on the tv making a fool of themselves; they're almost certainly republican.

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BristolStudent96
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What is needed in America is a party with democrat social views but republican economic ones.
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Greenlaner
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Generally i find American Republicans mainly come in two forms. Neo-conservatives and Libertarians/Classical Liberals. Unfortunately most of the party leadership, and perhaps a larger part of republican voters consists of the former.
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Lukfisto
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it is really funny to call republican the limited government party. If you look at data - they are the biggest spenders, they are the more authoritarian than democrats.

And yet, Democrats are centre-left and republicans are centre-right. But the question we have to raise - what is the centre in US ? Every country have different political culture and therefore, centre in US is not the same as centre in UK.

If it would be the same - Democrats would be centre-right and republicans - right.
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Foghorn Leghorn
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They are lizards.

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prog2djent
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(Original post by liamb109)
No. Allowing the states to decide would be less federal government interference.
No, having little or no laws at the federal AND state levels would be the proper way to do it, where do people get married? Either a church or in a registry office. They should be left to decide whether they want to marry people, obviously, some churches may oppose it, and some may not, and all registry offices would take in same sex couples wanting to marry.

The whole states rights argument is complete junk and a barrier to equality of marriage, I'd say the majority of states voters and the parties in power would be against it, so anywhere where the republicans are in, and places where the democrats are in, but in highly christian (particularly African American) areas, or just poor areas. Only the afluent eastern sea board states with the dems in would be for gay marriage, and maybe California/Oregan.

But overall, I can't imagine:

Nevada, Arizona, Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia, Kentucky, Nebraska, Iowa, Idaho, Oregan, Montana, Missouri, Wyoming, South and North Carolina, Florida, Michigan, Dakota, Maryland ... being pro gay marriage, and those are states off the top off my head.

I think maybe Calif, New Hampshire, New Enlgand, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and Maine, would be pro gay marraige.
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tc92
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(Original post by LETSJaM)
You see an american senator on the tv making a fool of themselves; they're almost certainly republican.

<3 x
Have you heard of that Joe Biden guy? Fine orator.
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