Disclaimer: I am a liberal and only an armchair political analyst. Both parties are trying to get the most votes for their politicians - duh. But lots of people don't vote. So it seems to me that both parties have unique strategies to get enough votes to win enough votes. Democrats focus on appealing to a broad audience. Many will not vote but there are so many in the target audience that you can still win. This means Dems are more middle of the road (they need to appeal to as many voters as possible), more likely to try and appease or at least avoid offending someone, and therefore can come across as weak or bland. Dems are also more vague, meaning it's easier for them to face voter's remose; what exactly did "closing Gitmo" really mean? Leave it purposefully ill-defined to appeal to the most people. Republicans do the opposite. They focus on a smaller but more passionate audience. Although the number of voters is less, by appealing to so many of their specific hot button issues, Republicans encourage lots of them to vote so they can still win. This means Republicans are more likely to go for extremes held by that minority (they need all of those votes), more likely to not worry about offending someone outside of their target audience, and therefore can come across as crass or inconsiderate. Reps are also more more exclusive; why worry about being unpopular in certain groups if you're not counting on their votes? In the short term, Republicans are winning. Their strategy has really energized their target audience into voting in large numbers in the past two decades, whereas Democratic voters are turned off by their candidates perceived weakness and ambiguity. (Obama carried so many Democratic voters because he seemed so strong and specific. "Seemed" is the key word.) However, the GOP strategy is getting harder and harder to work with. To win the general election, you need to win the primary election. This requires giving voters a reason you're better than other candidates. Democrats can always move sideways (picking different stances on issues to get different votes) because they're target audience is so wide. Republicans cannot. Because their audience is so narrow, Republicans need to move up (show a stronger commitment to certain issues) or make their primary opponents look like they're moving down (showing less commitment aren't to certain issues.) This leads to a lot of in-fighting, negative ads, and name calling. (Republicans can be called RINO but Dems never use DINO.) GOP candidates have to degrade each other and/or go to further extremes to appeal to their audience like a race to become the "most" like their smaller audience. (Not that Dems don't do this, but it's less necessary.) However, there's a limit to how extreme one can go without turning off the average voter and give votes to Democrats as a way of voting against Republicans. To me, this is where we are right now. Republicans are trying to outdo each other for support of a narrow base, but in doing so, they are giving Dems more votes by way of "voting against". This might not be alot right now, but unless the GOP changes its strategy, this will become a serious problem soon. Thoughts or baseless accusations?