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Abstract

Both Democrats and Republicans have taken strong positions on wealth redistribution. But is there variance within the parties? I hypothesize that while moderate non-donors and moderate donors will favor increases in federal spending for such policies at similar rates, both liberal and conservative donors will be less likely to favor spending due to attachment to their personal wealth. This paper analyzes the differences in support for increasing the budgets of five wealth redistributive policies while controlling for political donations: public schools, welfare, aid to the poor, childcare, and Social Security. The research finds that moderates and moderate donors support do not differ. Liberal non-donors are more likely to favor increases in spending for public school and Social Security, while their donor counterparts favor childcare. Conservative donors are consistently less likely than non-donors to favor increases in spending on wealth redistributive policies. These findings expose a clear class split amongst conservatives and indicates a concerning divide between the Republican political elite and the constituents they are supposed to represent.

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