22 Nov 2010

Centrists: Our Time is NOW – Dems and GOP are Becoming Regional Parties

We’ve been hearing for years that the Republican party is becoming a regional party, giving up huge swaths of the country as it becomes more and more conservative. They barely have any congresspersons or senators heading to D.C. from New England or the West Coast, and the ones that are are the few that buck the national trend, sticking to a more moderate tack.

But a lesser noticed aspect of that dynamic is the other side of the coin – Democrats are playing catch up to also become a regional party, by giving up on huge portions of the South and Midwest (and rural areas in general). As both major parties pull farther and farther from the center, more each election cycle are finding that the parties have left them. They declare their independence… creating a situation where there are a growing number of states where independents are the ones who are in the majority of registered voters.

Earlier this year, John Avlon, the leading centrist independent pundit, reported that we now have fully eleven states where independents outnumber either Democrats or Republicans… and if trends continue, we can expect more in coming years.

It’s time we began focusing our efforts on states and races where we can have the most impact. Had we been more organized, independents across the country could have sent money, and even traveled to volunteer, for Eliot Cutler’s race in Maine. His campaign was rallying at the end, only to lose by a few thousand votes – with more money and organizational support, he likely would have done better.

If we’re lucky enough to have Olympia Snowe drop the Republican party and run as an independent, this could be our chance to start building that foundation for bigger and better things. Assuredly other lesser known candidates will spring up that can be rallying points for the groundswell of independent energy in states and localities as well.

Regardless of where you live, whether you think we need a centrist party or not, or what issues you think are most important… just get out there and do something. We’ve got a lot of work to get where we need to be – where we have as much representation in government as our numbers suggest we should have in a relatively fair representative democracy, but there has never been a better time than now to start building an opposition.

Author Details
After a few years of blogging on other sites, Solomon launched ‘Rise of the Center’ – the precursor to Uniters.org, leading to a number of interviews and freelance opportunities, most notably covering the 2012 election cycle on WNYC.org – the website for the largest NPR station in the country, in New York City – and reported from the floor of the 2012 Democratic & Republican National Conventions. After a hiatus from politics, the horrific circus of the 2016 election, and more generally increasing extremism and corruption, brought him back to this project.
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After a few years of blogging on other sites, Solomon launched ‘Rise of the Center’ – the precursor to Uniters.org, leading to a number of interviews and freelance opportunities, most notably covering the 2012 election cycle on WNYC.org – the website for the largest NPR station in the country, in New York City – and reported from the floor of the 2012 Democratic & Republican National Conventions. After a hiatus from politics, the horrific circus of the 2016 election, and more generally increasing extremism and corruption, brought him back to this project.
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2 thoughts on “Centrists: Our Time is NOW – Dems and GOP are Becoming Regional Parties”

  1. "Its time we began focusing our efforts on states and races where we can have the most impact." Indeed. Independents outnumber Democrats and Republicans in Rhode Island, and they just elected their first Independent governor.

    I remember that article by Avlon because it was so frustrating to read an article saying there are "11 states with a plurality or majority of Independents" but which doesn't say what states those are, or what the source of this supposed fact was, and Avlon was just one among a handful of MSM commentators throwing that number around back then. So I did a little searching at the time, but was only able to come up with a list that had 9 states on it:
    http://politeaparty.blogspot.com/2010/01/independ

    Still lookin' for those other two. I've heard Arkansas as a potential candidates, but they don't have partisan registration at all.

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