Q:

How political ideologies influence social policy?

A:

Political ideology influences social policy due to the beliefs that individual policy makers hold. These ideologies vary along a scale of liberal to conservative. According to Justin Quinn of About.com, conservative social policy goals are influenced by traditional religious beliefs. According to Suffolk Community College’s Professor Norman West, liberal ideology focuses on equal opportunities.

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In the United States, policy makers that hold a conservative political ideology write social policy that if often influenced by religious beliefs, restricts or eliminates abortion, reflects a traditional view of marriage. Conservative social policy also usually opposes restrictions on the use or ownership of firearms. Conservative social policy also calls for large amounts of defense funding. Policy makers that subscribe to a liberal point of view support social policy that increases access to abortion or keeps the status quo of current abortion laws, allows for non-traditional marriages and seeks to reduce religious intervention in public affairs. Social liberal policy makers also support programs that promote equal opportunity for all citizens, including affirmative action.

Moderate political ideology seeks a midpoint between the two political ideologies. Moderate social policy is often a compromise between conservative and liberal issues.

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