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“The best kind of partisanship, based on those universal values, promotes fierce but constructive arguments. It acknowledges that in a good society, most political differences involve not a choice between good versus evil, but among competing goods — efficiency, security, entrepreneurship, fairness, individualism and solidarity, to name a few. Compromise (along with, yes, bipartisanship) is easier when we’re honest about the trade-offs we’re making. … So our fight should not be against partisanship. It should be in favor of rehabilitating the vibrant and honest partisanship on which democracy depends.”
“There’s a stark partisan difference in who has been affected by the coronavirus: Democrats are far more likely than Republicans to live in communities hit hard by Covid-19. … This has contributed to a partisan divide in attitudes about the pandemic, one in which Republican governors, lawmakers, and voters have remained broadly supportive of Trump — and have pushed for policies like the rapid reopening of businesses — while Democrats have not.”
A new Monmouth poll finds just 20% of the public feels that Americans are united and in agreement on our most important values while 77% say we are not. Big majorities of Democrats (82%), Republicans (78%), and independents (72%) feel that the country is fundamentally divided. Also interesting: “More than 6-in-10 Americans (62%) feel that the country has become more divided since Trump took office. Just 11% say the country has become more united and 25% say there has not really been a change in our sense of unity.”
A new Axios/Survey Monkey poll finds 61% of Democrats see Republicans as “racist/bigoted/sexist.” Meanwhile, 31% of Republicans say they view Democrats in the same light. ”If Americans are this convinced that the other side isn’t just wrong, but dumb and evil, they’ll never be able to find enough common ground to solve real problems. And they’re more likely to elect leaders who can’t do it, either.”
A new CBS News poll finds that 49% of Republicans say that hearing criticisms of President Trump on the Russia investigation only makes them want to defend him more. Another 42% say they want to wait to see what the facts show. Seventy percent of Republicans call the Russia investigation a “witch hunt,” while 77% of Democrats call it a “critical” matter of national security.
64% to 55%
A new Pew Research survey shows a majority of both Republicans and Democrats say they have “just a few” or no friends in the opposing party. About 64% of Democrats and 55% of Republicans say they have “just a few” or “none” close friends who are Republicans or Democrats, respectively.
A new CBS News poll finds 73% of Americans say the tone of the political debate is encouraging political violence. “Democrats are especially likely to say so. About a third of Americans consider the recent shooting of a Congressman and others a terrorist attack.”
Of Americans describe the country as more politically divided today than in the past, while just 12% say the country is no more divided, a new Pew Research survey finds. “The nature of the country’s political divisions is a rare point of partisan agreement: Comparable majorities of Democrats and Democratic leaners (88%) and Republicans and Republican leaners (84%) say the country is more divided these days than in the past.”
The thing about the strongman candidacies is that they are secretly weak. They feed off feelings of fear and inadequacy. That’s why they target minority rights first. … And that is what’s happening here. We’ve seen brushfires of fear sweep through this election season, with mayors calling for internment camps, governors refusing refugees, and presidential candidates trying to win over the angriest inmates of the hyperpartisan asylum. This competition to connect with the reptile mind is beneath the country Lincoln once called ‘the last best hope of earth.’ … This is a time for choosing between our best traditions and our worst fears.”
This is an era of titanic challenges and tiny politics. On issue after issue, the Republican and Democratic parties preen and pose but ultimately duck their responsibilities to solve the transcendent problems of our times.