The Republican Party and Democratic Party are so politically diverse inside their party and even to a certain extent are both culturally diverse. Both parties represent states and districts all over the country even though both parties are stronger in some areas and weaker in others. So it is hard to layout what are the differences a Republican and a Democrat since there are so many different Republicans and Democrats in both parties.
But if you want to say the Republican Party is the conservative party and the Democratic Party is the liberal party even though the Republican Party is made up of Conservatives, Libertarians, Neoconservatives religious Conservatives which are different from political Conservatives and Libertarians. And the Democratic Party is made up of Liberals, Progressives and Socialists. And both parties have centrists that are more conservative than liberal and vice-versa, but aren’t that hard-core and partisan as others in their party. Putting all of that aside and you might be able to explain and see the difference between Republicans and Democrats.
I believe the better way to tell the differences between Republicans and Democrats is to look at the differences between Conservatives and Liberals. Who both are supposed to represent the main reasons why we have a two-party system. Because one party gives you the conservative viewpoint and the other party gives you the liberal viewpoint. And at least in a classical sense it is not so much policies and goals that separate Conservatives from Liberals. Because both sides tend to believe in and want the same things. But the role of government as it relates to the private sector and how involved government should be.
Conservatives and Liberals at least in the classical sense both believe in individual freedom. Both believe in personal responsibility. Both believe in opportunity, believe in law enforcement and a strong defense and even limited government. But where we differ is where does government come into these areas and how they it should be limited and what should it do.
What is government’s role when it comes to opportunity for Americans who need it?
What should government do when it comes to law enforcement and where should it stop?
How strong should our defense be and what role does foreign policy and diplomacy have in making sure our country is as secure as possible?
How limited should government should be and when does it become either too small and not having what it needs to serve the country? And when does to become too big and intrusive and stopping freedom for the individual?
It is not so much that Conservatives and Liberals are different because again we tend to have similar goals and believe in similar things. The War on Drugs and criminal justice and sentencing reform, privacy and another War in Iraq are perfect examples of that. Where both sides are coming and working together to get the same outcomes on these issues. But where we differ is what is government’s role in these areas and what should it be doing and how much should be invested in it.