Democrats. Sappy bleeding hearts or cold-blood, naive technocrats? Nah! Too dependent on, on the words of Roland Martin, "getting Pookie off the couch" for votes? Hardly. Forget the usual moronic conventions. It all comes down to philosophy.
One of Robert Downey Jr's early star vehicles (which thus lead to his personal implosion) was an biopic of Charlie Chaplin called, well Chaplin. There's a scene where he's musing about politics and morality with fellow screen pioneer Douglas Fairbanks (with whom Chaplin and Lilian Gish found United Artists film company), played by Kevin Kline.
Chaplin says to Fairbanks: "America...this is a wonderful, country and full of so much potential, Doug...underneath such ugliness."
Fairbanks replies: "You're wrong, Charlie. America's a great country now, on the surface. It's just that there are truly ugly, evil things underneath that we can't expose."
If you approach this nation's body and soul like Chaplin in this scene you'll fail. Democrats tend to organize the world this way. Republicans--not the mass of clowns or demagogues but ones in control, think like Fairbanks--and such orientation makes manipulating people and issues easier to manipulate. This isn't mere abstract thought versus realism/pragmatism. Nothing that facile. There are legions of pragmatic Democrats. This is, rather, about bedrock views.