Libertarians Rising

The party that reels in these voters will dominate the future of American politics

Charles Dharapak / AP

Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul

To oversimplify: Democrats are for Big Government; Republicans are against it.

To oversimplify somewhat less, Democrats aren't always for Big Government, and Republicans aren't always against it. Democrats treasure civil liberties, whereas Republicans are more tolerant of government censorship to protect children from pornography, or of wiretapping to catch a criminal, or of torture in the war against terrorism. War in general and Iraq in particular--certainly Big Government exercises--are projects Republicans tend to be more enthusiastic about. Likewise the criminal process: Republicans tend to want to make more things illegal and to send more people to jail for longer. Republicans also...

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