What Are Common Stereotypes of Politicians?

N. Madison
N. Madison

There are many stereotypes that are often applied to politicians. Some of the most common are those that depict politicians as dishonest or greedy. Likewise, a stereotypical politician often pursues political issues not because he cares about them but because doing so benefits him in some way. Stereotypes of politicians also depict these people as believing they are entitled to more than everyone else or using their public-speaking skills to manipulate.

Politicians are often depicted as good public speakers who excel in manipulating words.
Politicians are often depicted as good public speakers who excel in manipulating words.

One of the most common stereotypes of politicians is that they are habitually dishonest, and many voice the opinion that voters should not trust politicians because of this. In fact, some state that people who run for political office only tell voters what they want to hear before they are elected. Afterward, some people believe the elected officials are only interested in pursuing their own agendas. Following this idea, a person may expect a politician who claims he wants to lower taxes to work toward the opposite goal once he is no longer in need of votes.

Politicians are commonly depicted as dishonest or greedy.
Politicians are commonly depicted as dishonest or greedy.

Common stereotypes of politicians assert that people in these positions don't pursue issues about which they really care. Instead, some people believe they choose to care about the issues presented by people and groups who contribute large sums of money to their campaigns. If this proves to be true, it would mean that any changes he helped to make were because he was, in a fashion, paid to do so rather than believing the cause was important or having a true passion for change.

Politicians are commonly thought of as making promises to constituents that they don't keep.
Politicians are commonly thought of as making promises to constituents that they don't keep.

Stereotypes of politicians also include depicting them as feeling entitled. Some stereotypes portray politicians as selfish individuals who believe they are entitled to the best of everything, even if the majority of their constituents have little. For example, politicians are often stereotyped as consuming meals that cost a great deal of money, smoking expensive cigars, drinking premium alcoholic beverages, and spending much of their time golfing or socializing — all thanks to the financing of taxpayers. Some stereotypes also depict them as likely to take luxury vacations when they should be working.

Public-speaking skills are often included in stereotypes of politicians as well. They are often depicted as good public speakers who say a lot but don't really say anything real, concrete, or of value. Politicians are often depicted as talking circles around other people to avoid committing to anything or providing definite answers to questions. Stereotypically, their speeches are viewed as highly manipulative.

Some stereotypes depict politicians as doing whatever it takes to secure votes, including feigning cooperation.
Some stereotypes depict politicians as doing whatever it takes to secure votes, including feigning cooperation.
N. Madison
N. Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a wiseGEEK writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

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