Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Essential Politics: The left-right split is far bigger in the U.S. than in Europe — and it’s growing

David Lauter,Los Angeles Times

Anyone who has watched U.S. politics in recent years knows that a widening gap between left and right, Democrat and Republican, has defined our era. Hardly a week passes without fresh evidence.

Americans — and some Europeans — have often talked of similar divisions in Western Europe’s major democracies. Divisive issues like Brexit in the U.K. and the rights of religious minorities in France drive comparisons to U.S. polarization.

But the U.S. differs notably from those other countries: Our ideological gaps are much wider on big cultural issues, according to a major new study by the Pew Research Center.


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