Are Democrats and Republicans Largely the Same? Or, Is One Party Worse Than the Other?

In these last four years, the GOP has shown me to be much worse than the Democrats. I never questioned their patriotism, commitment to the rule of law and Constitution prior to 2016. I believed that many had real convictions in conservative principles. Right now, besides power, I think they only care about tax cuts (and I think that’s related to their power as well).

But I’m not comfortable viewing the parties this way, as this is the way partisans think. Their perception of the other side is often a distortion, seeing them in the worst possible light. How do I know I’m not doing that now? I don’t think I can fully know.

That’s where this thread comes in. I’d like to gather evidence to support or refute my current perception. I welcome others to provide examples/evidence.

I will close with another basis for my perception. While both sides often portray the other side in the worst possible light, the last four years seem to have supported Democrats’ depictions of Republicans, rather than the other way around. For example, some Democrats have accused Republicans of being racist. I never thought this prior to 2016, but now this accusation isn’t easy to dismiss. Republicans characterized Democrats as socialists and/or communists, but Joe Biden was the Democratic nominee. (To be fair, the support for Sanders is not insignificant.) There’s more that could be said, and I hope this claim I’m making can be further scrutinized.

9 thoughts on “Are Democrats and Republicans Largely the Same? Or, Is One Party Worse Than the Other?

  1. I forgot about Akin. That’s one good point for the GOP. I think they eventually censured or remove King from a committee, too–which is another good thing.

    2/4/2021

    2/5/2021

  2. Cancel culture

    Republicans like to point this out as a threat from the Left. Is it? Or are the Republicans just as bad?

    I would put the following as evidence for the GOP’s claims:

    My understanding is McNeil is apologizing for saying a racial slur, when asking a question about it. I guess it depends on the racial slur, but this seems super excessive. I absolutely hate the n-word. If it was that, I think the consequences were excessive.

  3. Andrew Cuomo Scandal Highlights Republicans Appalling Double Standard by Max Boot at WaPo

    The stark differences in accountability between Democrats and Republicans underscore the reality that the GOP these days is interested only in keeping power — not in exercising it responsibly. The only thing, it seems, that Republican elected officials can do to arouse the ire of their base is to criticize Trump. Republicans have no right to crow about Democratic misconduct until they show more interest in getting their own house in order. Their double standard — excoriating Cuomo, excusing Trump — is egregious.

    3/12/2021

    Reps. Nadler, Ocasio-Cortez, other N.Y. Democrats call on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to resign over sexual harassment allegations from WaPo

    Cuomo refuses to resign amid Democratic uproar over sexual harassment accusations from WaPo

    3/14/2021

    New York’s vaccine czar called county officials to gauge their loyalty to Cuomo amid sexual harassment investigation from WaPo

    This is a really bad look for Cuomo–and adds to another thing that could warrant the end of his governorship in my view. I know politicans can play hardball–punishing people that cross them. A certain degree of that is acceptable in my view. Here, though, the Governor’s point person of the covid vaccine also made calls checking if some of county officials would refrain from judging Governor Cuomo on the sexual harrassment allegations until after an investigation was completed. Why couldn’t the Governor get someone not associated with the vaccines to make this call? It might still be problematic, but not nearly as bad in my view.

    1. Biden calls for Cuomo to resign after investigation finds the New York governor sexually harassed 11 women from WaPo

      It kinda sounds like many of the key Democrats are calling for Cuomo to resign:

      When asked about the report Tuesday afternoon, Biden told reporters, “I think he should resign.”

      “Look, I’m not going to flyspeck this,” the president added. “I’m sure there are some embraces that were totally innocent. But apparently the attorney general decided there were things that weren’t.”

      Pelosi and three House Democrats from New York also called on the governor to step down, joining about a dozen from the state delegation who had previously done so.

      “We commend the brave women who came forward and spoke truth to power,” Reps. Hakeem Jeffries, Thomas Suozzi and Gregory W. Meeks said in a statement. “The time has come for Governor Andrew Cuomo to do the right thing for the people of New York State and resign.”

      The state’s two Democratic senators, Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, also reiterated their calls for his resignation.

      “No elected official is above the law,” they said in a statement. “The people of New York deserve better leadership in the governor’s office.”

      And, in a rare move, the Democratic governors of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Rhode Island put out a joint statement saying they were “appalled” by the report’s findings and that Cuomo must step down.

      I don’t think Republicans have done or would do anything similar. They certainly didn’t respond this way to Trump.

      (By the way, after reading the article, I feel like Cuomo should resign, too. It’s hard to believe that the allegations aren’t true. Sadly, the details of the independent report and Gov. Cuomo’s response to it reminds me of Trump.)

    2. New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announces resignation in effort to head off likely impeachment in wake of devastating report on his conduct from WaPo

      On some level I feel bad for Cuomo, and his family, but the details from the report warrant impeachment or resignation. To me, the story reiterates an age old principle, one the Founding Fathers surely appreciated–namely, too much power in one person or group is a bad thing. Absolute power corrupts absolutely, to quote Lord Acton. And to add a bit more nuance and detail, I think people in power can so easily justify inappropriate actions and also begin to feel above norms and rules that apply to others.

      But to go back to the thread. This incident really does contrast the Democrats from the Republicans in my view. One main difference is that the Democrats do have convictions in political principles and policies–they’re not just about seeking power. The same is not true for the GOP.

        1. I briefly saw a short comment by Preet Bharara, and he seemed wary, as if he wouldn’t put it past Cuomo to have something underhanded up his sleeve.

  4. The Republicans and conservative media approach to the pandemic and the vaccine has been insanely irresponsible. My understanding is that the state of Tennessee stopped vaccine outreach to minors–not only the COVID vaccine, but vaccines for other diseases as well. (Ohio also prevented their schools from following CDC guidelines.)

    Genuine question: Is there anything the Democrats have done that is comparable?

    By the way, with regard to the recent decisions by Tennessee and Ohio, here’s a good response from Alexander Petri.

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