The Washington Post

This is the Republican Party’s biggest problem

Here's something unusual: Democrats, independents, and Republicans all agree about what's wrong with the Republican Party. In fact, Republicans are, if anything, even more upset about it than Democrats.

The GOP's uniting sin? It won't compromise.

Gallup asked Americans to name their top problem with both the Democrats and the Republicans. They then broke those responses down by party affiliation.

For the Democratic Party, the top problem was...nothing. Really. That was the answer of 20 percent of respondents -- almost all of them Democrats -- and that made it the top answer for the Democratic Party.

In second place, however, was the argument that Democrats spend too much. But there was considerable partisan disagreement about this criticism. Only 10 percent of Democrats and 11 percent of independents brought it up. But it featured in 23 percent of Republican responses. That vaulted it to second place -- but, in reality, spending is the GOP's main complaint about the Democrats more than it's the country's main complaint.

The Republican Party is a different story. There, 22 percent of Democrats, 17 percent of independents, and fully 26 percent of Republicans complained that the GOP refuses to compromise. That's rather remarkable: It turns out that the GOP's rigidity is the top complaint of both Democrats and Republicans. It easily beats "nothing," even among Republicans!

Every other oft-mentioned criticism of the GOP breaks down by partisanship. Twenty percent of Democrats think Republicans protect the rich, but only 2 percent of Republicans agree. Fourteen percent of Republicans think the GOP doesn't stand up for its beliefs, but only 3 percent of Democrats agree. The GOP's resistance to compromise is unique: It's infuriated Democrats, independents, and Republicans.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
Making family dinnertime happen
Deaf banjo player teaches thousands
New limbs for Pakistani soldiers
Play Videos
A veteran finds healing on a dog sled
Learn to make this twice-baked cookie
How to prevent 'e-barrassment'
Play Videos
Syrian refugee: 'I’m committed to the power of music'
The art of tortilla-making
Michael Bolton's cinematic serenade to Detroit
Play Videos
Circus nuns: These sisters are no act
5 ways to raise girls to be leaders
Cool off with sno-balls, a New Orleans treat
Next Story
Brad Plumer · April 1, 2013

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.