Now I know the phrase 'sooner rather than later' has already been explored here
But I would like this to be seen as a follow up question that further examines the phrase. After doing some research, I learned that even though 'sooner than later' has become fairly common, the idiomatic way of expressing the idea is to use 'sooner RATHER than later' as one can do it sooner(A) or one can do it later(B) (two choices). I also remember across an article saying how 'sooner than later' is just a mutated version of 'sooner or later', but the article didn't provide many examples I can refer to.
Here is the real question though, what if we add 'better' (comparative) to the structure. Does 'sooner rather than later' still make logical sense?
- I told him that it's better to do it sooner than later.
- I told him it's better to do it sooner rather than later.
Here, I can rewrite the first sentence as 'I told him it's better to do it sooner than IT IS TO DO IT LATER' or even 'Doing it sooner is BETTER THAN LATER I told him.' On the other hand, the second sentence doesn't seem to be correct as 'rather than' doesn't function in the same way in terms of joining the two parts for comparison.
So what do you think about this situation? If 'better than later' still the wrong phrase to use regardless? Or is this a case of grammar rules not following real world logic?
Many thanks in advance.