Moderate political parties have a lot to offer investors. First, moderates share many characteristics with conservatives and liberals. For example, they both favor the larger government, but to varying degrees. Twenty-three percent of moderates favor a larger government compared to 53 percent of conservatives and only 13 percent of liberals. In addition, moderates generally select a smaller government, which is in line with the majority’s preferred size.
Historically, the role of religion has been to unite diverse individuals into a common purpose and to define a set of values and social norms. However, despite its importance to society, religion can also create conflict, as it fosters an in-group mentality and can create prejudice against other value systems and behaviors.
The partisan composition of the various political parties also reflects different attitudes toward religion. For example, while most Democratic-oriented typology groups hold that religion should be kept separate from government policy, the majority of Solid Liberals, Opportunity Democrats, and Disaffected Democrats do not. Conversely, white evangelicals make up smaller shares of the two Republican-leaning groups: Market Skeptic Republicans and New Era Enterprisers. In addition, a large percentage of the public is non-affiliated. This is particularly true among the Solid Liberals and Liberal Democrats, as well as the Christian and Democratic-leaning groups.
Despite these differences, religious values and beliefs strongly predict party preference. Religious traditionalists generally lean toward the Democratic Party, while secular voters tend toward the Republican Party.
The conservative and liberal parties have many things in common, and the moderates have many of them. For example, most moderates believe that the government should play a role in equal opportunity and that the government has created incentives for poor people not to work. Seven in 10 moderates disagree with the idea that “the deck is stacked against people like me.”
Despite their differences, moderates tend to be well-informed and understand both sides of complex issues. Moreover, according to a recent poll by the Third Way, a significant segment of the electorate is outside of either party’s ideological camps. That means the Democratic Party will have a tough time winning elections with a self-consciously liberal tone. But on the other hand, the Republicans may have a chance to gain voters back by reaching out to skeptical swing voters who don’t feel strongly polarized.
Moderates lean liberally. Most moderates believe that big government burdens the economy and are more likely to vote for smaller governments. Two-thirds of moderates believe that government gets in the way of economic growth. In addition, 23 percent of moderates support a larger government, while 37 percent think it should be smaller.
Differing Positions on Social Issues
Regarding social issues, moderate political parties tend to hold contrasting positions from conservatives and liberals. For example, while many believe the government should play a role in equal opportunity, they are skeptical that the “deck is stacked against people like me” and think it is unfair to punish poor people.
This is reflected in a recent Democratic think tank Third Way poll. The poll included detailed questions on issues and the opinions of 1,500 registered voters. Democratic pollster Peter Brodnitz conducted a similar survey from the Benenson Strategy Group.
The differences in partisanship in support of social investment and consumption policies have similarities. In both cases, the radical right prioritizes consumption policies more than social investment. This is partly due to the differences between the two party families regarding the economic outlook.
Lack of Partisanship
Consider moderate political parties if you’re looking for a solid political investment. Their voting patterns are broadly consistent with those of the general public. However, if you’re interested in the issue, you may be better off investing in a more partisan party. While issue partisanship is typical among political parties, it can also be harmful.
Partisanship has increased since the mid-90s and is now at its highest level in 50 years. Interestingly, however, self-identified Democrats and Republicans are more likely to vote for a party of their choice today than they were thirty years ago. This trend may be related to how people adjust their political preferences over time.
The authors find a correlation between issue alignment and partisanship, even if it has increased modestly. For example, the correlation between issue alignment and partisanship is significant in figures three and four.