While we will discuss policy ideas, and bring together thinkers – both professional and serious amateurs – we’re not a think tank. Our job, as a centrist grassroots organization, is to represent the views of what we call the ‘centrist big tent’.
We don’t do this by gathering a group of insiders that pretend they get to decide what centrist means, as certain organizations are trying to do, but rather the opposite – we find the priorities and stances of centrists and then make that our platform. In other words; we represent centrists.
We find these things out, and come up with ideas, using several methods. Chief among is by reviewing both polls that ask people what issues their priorities are, as well as polls on the issues themselves. We then bring up issues with followers on social media to go deeper than just the top line survey data you can find in polls, look at the platforms of centrist parties and organizations, as well as candidates in the centrist big tent, and think tanks from moderates on the center-left to center-right.
With the issue areas selected, we go another step down and look for specific policy ideas that have at least a large majority of support among centrists and moderates, and then use the engagement, interaction with campaigns and organizations, and working through think tank material to extrapolate that stance into positions and ideas that we can add to our platform.
In areas where we can’t find reliable polling – with specific policy ideas that haven’t gotten much national attention, for instance – we rely on the large number of extended conversations we’ve had with thousands of centrists and moderates over the last decade (we hope to have the resources to do our own, in-depth, educational polling someday), as well as the aforementioned interaction with centrist and moderate campaigns, organizations and think tanks.
Ultimately, the goal is to be of, by and for the ‘centrist big tent’ – to represent your views, and build a tent around them. We in no way expect everyone to agree with all of them, and in fact we both expect – and hope for – serious, substantive, passionate and healthy debate.
These sections will be amended, as we slowly evolve as an organization – as our constitution and nation has, over the generations, but the core principles will remain for the lifespan of this organization.
As that evolution happens, some of these views may no longer be centrist 20-30 years from now, and that’s fine. We call ourselves centrists because that’s where we happen to land on the political spectrum. We naturally wouldn’t just arbitrarily change our views if we moved to a nation where our view placed us on the left or right of that nation’s political spectrum. These are the positions we believe in.
Much like how the political parties have seen their tents move around the political spectrum, where we go as an organization will naturally evolve as well – within the confines of core principles set forth in these sections.
One last note. For some bizarre reason, a certain element on the right and left say that centrists are people who just up and decide that they’re going to stand in the center, rather than the reality – we believe what we believe, same as the left and right (among others) do, but our beliefs just happen to land us in the center area of the political spectrum, here in the United States.
That’s all centrist (or right, or left) means – they’re just positional labels. These labels align with different beliefs if you move to a different country, and will align with different beliefs over time, as the spectrum of belief among a population shifts.
Pretending terms like this mean anything else is just deceptive marketing (or worse… usually worse, in politics).
Where a person lands on the political spectrum isn’t something they just choose, and just saying that you’re here or there doesn’t change anything about where your views plot you in relation to other people. Same as those on the right and left, if your views end up aligning with the center, then you’re a centrist, and if they don’t, you aren’t a centrist just because you call yourself one.
Beware of those who claim to be centrists or moderates, while lying about what it means in order to try and co-opt us, and/or those who criticize us for things that have nothing to do with who we really are, and/or what we really believe. This is happening more and more on the right, as the Republican Party begins to radicalize to the point where ideological conservatives are going independent, and some corrupt, dishonest elements among those conservative independents are attempting to co-opt centrists for their ideological ends.
We will fight for the beliefs centrists hold, do our part to help organize an opposition movement in the center, fight corruption and those of us aware of attempts to co-opt our budding groundswell for their own ends, rather than representing what we believe.