1 of the 2 major political parties in U.S. politics today. Democrats tend to be liberal, and they think that government should try to solve important problems. However, they also think government shouldn’t try to make rules about sexuality or individual identity.
5 things Democrats ran on in 2016:
- Environmental and climate justice, combatting climate change
- Regulating big banks and big financial corporations
- Healthcare for every American
- Gun control & prevent gun violence
- Creating a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants
Here’s the rest of the Democratic platform if you’re interested.
Democrats’ vision for the U.S.
Democrats want a society where everybody has a decent living standards: enough food, resources, shelter, access to doctors and education, and so on. They believe government has a role in helping accomplish these things. They also often argue that government should intervene when companies do things that might be harmful to citizens.
For example, Democrats have created programs making sure that poor people don’t starve (food stamps/SNAP benefits) and can get healthcare (Medicaid). They’ve created a program to make sure that after you’re too old to work, society still provides for you (Social Security). They also want to increases taxes on the ultra rich and use that money to pay for their priorities.
Democrats also argue that government should be careful about laws that dictate who you can be or what you can do with your body. For example, Democrats have been the main defenders of a women’s right to choose if she wants to have an abortion. They’ve also fought to expand the rights of people who are gay or lesbian (the right to get married, for example, or to adopt).
Conflicts in the party
Recently, Democrats have disagreed over what their message (or messages) should be, and who they should try to convince to vote for them. For example, Democrats very much need black Americans to vote for them to win elections. However, the U.S. is still a majority white country, and some have argued that Democrats need to appeal to white working class voters. It’s probably possible to do both, but there’s tension in the party over how to build a winning alliance of constituents.
Democrats also disagree over how aggressively government should push for social change. More progressive Democrats want to do more than make sure everybody has access to a decent standard of living. They want to pass laws that more evenly distribute money, for example, or more fully fund existing programs.
Right now, for example, many progressive Democrats want the government to take over health insurance. Instead of private companies competing for business, the government would become the only buyer. This would give them a lot more power to bargain prices down. Less progressive Democrats still want to make sure everybody gets healthcare. But they might think this is too big a job for government to do on its own, or that private companies are an important part of the fabric of American life.