Political Parties

What do the political parties stand for in terms of the American Values?

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

From the "The Declaration of Independence in 1776" to today, generations of Americans have held dear to their heart and fought hard for what they believed to be the American values. In the short history of America, several major political parties have emerged and some are still standing strong today, in defining and defending these American values.

Major Political Parties

The Democratic Party and the Republican Party are the two major parties representing the majority of the people. They are often said to be one on the left or more liberal and progressive side of the spectrum (Democrats), in contrast to the other, which is on the right or conservative side of the spectrum (Republican).

Although this is where the two parties are now today, this order has been reversed in the past. If you are interested in the history of the political parties, here are some simple read: https://www.history.com/topics/us-politics/democratic-party; https://www.history.com/topics/us-politics/republican-party

The other political parties that voters see frequently are the Green Party and the Libertarian Party. The Green Party focuses more on environmental and social progress, even more than the Democratic Party. The Libertarian Party stands for smaller government, even further than the Republican Party.

Political Spectrum & Platforms

The left and right division may be too simplistic to cut the political spectrum along one dimension. There are other systems in place to classify the difference among the political parties and ideology differences.

To see what these parties stand for, the party platforms are the official documents decided by the parties, approved in the party convention, and followed by the party leaders and members. Though there may be a lot of news and views on the party policies and differences, voters should really start by looking at the party platforms represent the essence, or the core values and practices of the parties.

If you want to get a quick sense of how the Democratic Party Platform is in comparison to the Republican one, the contrast between the Biden and Trump campaigns is a good representation for what the two parties stand in the 2020 election.

To further understand where the parties and candidates stand on key issues and policies, please visit our page on this topic.