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BY: Charles Fain Lehman
A new study from the Pew Research Center shows a growing partisan gap in opinions on major issues, driven in part by Democrats' leftward drift.
Pew - Democrats - Variety - Issues - Republicans
Pew found Democrats have moved substantially left on a variety of issues while Republicans' views remain relatively constant. That was true across social and economic issues; Pew claimed that the split between Republicans and Democrats is more pronounced than any divides by race, gender, or socioeconomic status.
"This poll and some other recent ones show that Democrats are pulling more strongly to the left and Republicans are not pulling quite as strongly to the right as a general matter," said Karlyn Bowman, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute who specializes in American public opinion.
Shift - Pew - Question - Welfare - Government
One such leftward shift came in Pew's question about welfare. As to whether or not the government "should do more to help the needy, even if it means going deeper into debt," 71 percent of Democrats respond affirmatively, up 17 points over the past six years.
Republicans' opinions have barely shifted, down slightly from 25 to 24 percent. Additionally, some 76 percent of Democrats say "poor people have hard lives because government benefits don't go far enough"—the highest proportion of Democrats since Pew started asking the question in 1994.
Democrats - Support - Interests - US - Allies
Democrats have also substantially increased their support for attending to the interests of U.S. allies. Overall, the number of Americans saying as much has increased eight points since last year, a change which "has come entirely from Democrats," Pew says. Democrats and Democrat leaners have increased their concern about allies from 62 to 74 percent since President Donald Trump took office.
In the case of immigration, while Americans of both parties have grown more liberal, Democrats still lead the trend. When asked if immigrants are more a burden or a boon to...
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