By Luke Douglas
January 8, 2023
On January 6th to the early hours on January 7th, I viewed the spectacle in the House of Representatives of trying to elect a Speaker of the House with GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy eventually being elected after a historic fifteen votes. As much as that disgusted me, I reflected on the way the House had operated for the past few years under Speaker Nancy Pelosi. In my mind, it cemented the thought that now is the time for a third ‘moderate-centrist’ party to be created.
When we look at the makeup of the American electorate, we have three distinct groups.
The far-right groups of the Republican party which includes libertarians, social conservatives, neoconservatives, and pro-Trumpist factions.
The far-left Progressive faction of the Democratic party which includes the progressives and liberals.
The moderate Centrist groups are Republican conservatives, moderates, and Anti-Trump factions as well as the Democratic moderates and conservative factions.
The problem is that both major parties’ radical minorities control their parties’ primary elections with many unsuitable candidates for most Americans, the moderate centrists. With about half of the states allowing cross-party voting by not declaring a specific party as well as even in states with closed elections, we have the same issue of most moderate-centrist voters end up voting for the lessor of two evils or someone they don’t want to support.
To be truthful, Republican right-leaning centrists and the Democratic left-leaning centrists are less apart in philosophy than they are from the far-right or far-left factions in their own party.
What’s the major sticking points? Not many. Abortion and 2nd Amendment.
Sure, there is some disagreement on immigration, climate, trade, social / fiscal policy, and other issues but nothing they couldn’t reach a compromise.
Abortion is a sticky proposition for right-centrist Republicans. Many are religious and truly don’t like abortion, but they do support women. It’s more open for the left-centrist Democrats as they feel government shouldn’t be involved with doctor-patient decisions. But both could agree on a bit more restrictive measure than Roe v Wade such as a 15-week limit with an exception for the life of the mother, rape, and incest. This is more in line with what most democratic industrialized countries currently have.
2nd Amendment is another sticky proposition for right-centrist Republicans. They feel an individual’s right to own guns should not be restricted whereas Democrats feel it should be restricted and more regulated. But both could agree on a compromised positions that close gun show / private sale loopholes, require a 7-14 day waiting period while gun registrations are checked, either ban or require higher registration requirements for large magazines and assault type weapons.
On the minor disagreements, they could agree on a higher quota for immigration with stronger border control including smart walls; a reasonable phase out of fossil fuel energy while increasing renewable, green energy; improving trade by removing tariffs, which the burden is on American taxpayers, while providing incentives for American companies to build in America; and restoring fiscal policy by balancing tax policy with prudent social spending, creating annual budget surplus to pay down our national debt down over the remainder of the 21st century (yea, it will take that long).
What would this do for passing legislation? It would force compromise as it is improbable that any party could gain control of the House. It would be possible that the third party might gain control of the Senate. But, again, this would require tri-partisan negotiations to reconcile bills so they can get passed. Compromise is NOT a dirty word.
As long as one party could gain control of the White House, House and Senate, it removes the checks and balances we truly need in our government. This check and balance must be restored by requiring a ‘hard’ mandatory 60 vote requirement in the Senate to pass any legislation and confirm Supreme Court nominees. Kill the filibuster in the Senate once and for all!
I won’t name them but, in looking at their records, those who could form the foundation of a third moderate-centrist party could potentially be 110 Democratic and 74 Republicans in the House which would represent 42.3% of Representatives as well as 32 Democrats and 23 Republicans in the Senate which would represent 55% of Senators, which a majority it still wouldn’t meet the 60-vote requirement.
All it would take is for those frustrated by the far-right and far-left dictating policy to decide to note be left out anymore and change allegiance.