What Does Liberal Vs Democrat Mean?

Liberal vs Democrat

What does Liberal vs Democrat mean?

The two most prominent political parties in the US, the Democratic and Republican Party, align with liberal and conservative ideologies. These ideologies influence policy debates that revolve around the appropriate amount of government intervention in the economy and in social behavior.

Liberalism is a philosophy that promotes individual freedom, equality and a free market economy. In practice, liberalism typically favors progressive taxation, a robust social safety net and environmental regulations. It also advocates for civil rights, consumer protection and racial/gender equity. Modern liberal ideas began gaining momentum in the 20th century as Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, Harry Truman’s Fair Deal, John F. Kennedy’s Great Society and Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty drove domestic policies toward the left.

While the terms Democrat and Liberal are often used interchangeably, they are not the same thing. A Democrat is a member of one of the two major political parties in the United States while a Liberal refers to someone who holds certain views about what the proper role of government should be. As our research on the American Political Spectrum reveals, many people don’t fit neatly into red-vs-blue ideological categories and instead lie somewhere along a spectrum that stretches across multiple dimensions. These individuals often don’t identify with a particular party but support the values, beliefs and preferred policies that are associated with those parties. As a result, the distinction between Democrat and Liberal can be somewhat confusing.