Party of the Rich, Party of the Poor

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Thomas Sowell's latest column takes on the myth that Republicans are the party of the rich and Democrats are the party of the poor. I'd like to see some more comprehensive data across the country (which I suspect will confirm this on the two issues he picks), but in California the richest counties were the strongest for Kerry and the poorest stronger for Bush. I'd be surprised if that wasn't true nationwide. Also, those who most wanted to be weaker on sentencing for criminals were more in neighborhoods where crime is low (i.e. rich areas), while those in areas where crime is a real concern voted against that measure. Sowell doesn't mention that the average Republican contribution (not Bush contribution, Republican overall) is in single digits, which I don't think is even close to the average Democratic gift. That would have fit nicely.

Now there may also be issues that more often go the other way (I'm not thinking of any in particular), but Sowell doesn't say that Republicans are the party of the poor or that Democrats are the party of the rich. He doesn't resort to anything along those lines, because that would be nonsense. He simply lists some facts that strongly contradict the standard narrative about the parties and says that the narrative is a fraud. Insofar as it's used for pandering, it is a fraud, though I think many Democratic politicians and voters kid themselves into believing it. In that case it's just a highly misleading political narrative not strongly based in any reality. Either is bad and should be resisted.

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