Democrat and Republican views on Affirmative Action

Why and to what extent do democrats support Affirmative Action?

Support big government - the democrats believe the federal government should help vulnerable people

It has made the US a fairer place - black middle class has developed and re-districting has allowed for more diversity of the house of representatives

Continued need for affirmative action - evidence of inequality, racial profiling and Trump refusing to condemn the KKK

A majority of blacks support democrats and affirmative action benefits them - want to attract their votes (88% voted for Clinton)

Believe the Constitution is flawed - it allowed slavery so we need to right these wrongs. Affirmative action ensures equality of opportunity


Blue dog democrats oppose affirmative action

Public sector more likely to opposed affirmative action as some feel it disadvantages them

Affirmative action policies that were divised to ensure blacks would have access to jobs they would have been denied "directly affected white Catholics" - in other words, affirmative action increased competition for those people and thus gave Republicans these votes

Why and to what extent to republicans support affirmative action?

Conservatives prefer limited government and believe the government shouldn't interfere with the state's rights. Affirmative action interferes with states' rights, so they're opposed

Unconstitutional as " all men are created equal" - affirmative action doesn’t provide equal opportunity and prevents self-reliance so can be seen as reverse discrimination

It is unfair - why should white Americans pay for what some of their ancestors did? Some blacks owned slaves. Other minority groups have fared well without affirmative action too (Chinese, Irish)

Unnecessary - many blacks have prospered in recent years (like Obama) and segregation is a choice. Racism is no longer as prevalent in the South (hence why the supreme court struck down parts of the Voting Rights Act 1965)

Affirmative action lowers standards and creates a stigma


Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell both benefitted from affirmative action (and support it) BUT Ben Carson didn't

Some republicans support affirmative action for electoral reasons - such republicans want to be seen as compassionate conservatism (as this shows a softer, more electable side)