Political analyst Charles Cook of the Washington newspaper Roll Call theorizes that Republicans can be divided into four parties: the Brooks Brothers party, the Eddie Bauer party, the Kmart party and the Staples party.
The Brooks Brothers Republicans, partial to such presidents as Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and George Bush, talk about wanting less government but "concede that government provides some order and stability." They drive big American cars and read the Wall Street Journal. They like Robert Dole and would have liked Richard Lugar.Eddie Bauer Republicans include "a lot of yuppies and formerly yuppie baby boomers." They believe that more should be spent on education, are probably pro-environment and pro-choice. They drive foreign cars or sport-utility vehicles, were partial to Pete Wilson or Lamar Alexander in the early primaries.
Kmart Republicans, the least affluent and most conservative, thought Ronald Reagan "was the only recent president truly worthy of the job." They're against abortion and gun control and they like Pat Buchanan.
The Staples people are entrepreneurs whose main concern is opposing taxes. They liked Phil Gramm early in the primaries, then defected to Steve Forbes.
Cook says he's looking for a similar model for the Democrats.
- Leah Garchik