The usefulness of ideology

Everybody has an ideology, but some ideologies are more inflexible than others.  Why might a political party want to have an ideology that reduces its flexibility?

In California, the legislature needs a 2/3 majority to pass a budget.  With the Republicans at just over 1/3 of the seats, they have a lot of power, if they can remain united.  Ideology provides a way to support this unity (though not an infallible one).  Party members can rally behind the banner of no tax increases – in game-theoretic terms, it serves as a focal point, a strategy that is easy to coordinate on.  Without it, the business of obstructing government would be a lot harder.


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