Monday, July 24, 2006 interesting idea

Lately, I've been seeing some complaints around the blogosphere from disgruntled Dems about the Democratic Party, and suggestions that there's no place left in it for them. Particularly in a state like Georgia where the Democratic Party isn't on "progressive" par with the national party, there's bound to be some dissatisfaction.

Move too far to the left, and the mostly Christian center and right of the party base start looking for moderate Republicans to suit them. Move too far to the right, and white liberals (the hardest group to please in the history of mankind) scream bloody murder while tossing out adjectives like "Republican-lite.". All of this can spell big trouble for a coalition party like the Democrats who has lived and died under "the big tent."

Even more importantly, I've been hearing this from people of all persuasions about both major parties for quite some time. Republicans aren't immune from this. A lot of conservatives who liked the party better under the leadership of Ronald Reagan haven't been happy with either of the two President Bushes or the McCain types. At least since the 90's, I've heard a lot about the rise of a third party. Pundits have been predicting the ruination and decline of one or both of the two major political parties for years. The Libertarians and Greens never panned out as a viable option. And Ross Perot's Reform Party lost steam just as soon as he stopped airing his infomercials with bar graphs and one-line zingers in his Texas twang.

But now, there's an interesting idea of a centrist party using the internet to elect its candidate. The creators of say their plan will force more discussion of issues of substance like education, healthcare, and terrorism, while leaving behind the political wedge issues like gay marriage and flag burning. Apparently, Bill Frist need not apply.

Two Carterites, Hamilton Jordan and Gerald Rafshoon, have joined with Republican, Doug Bailey, to launch an effort to put a serious bipartisan ticket on the ballot for the 2008 presidential election year. The idea is to nominate a "centrist" presidential candidate, who will then pick a running mate from the other party.

It's an interesting thought that, depending on the nominees, could have serious rammifications on the presidential race. I'm all for anything that forces the two major parties to get serious about focusing on discussion of major issues, and not taking any group of voters for granted. If running a "bipartisan" ticket takes the focus off of particular parties, that's probably another good thing as well. But I don't know about this internet voting thingy. The anti E-voting crowd will have a new front in their war on anything not involving paper and pencil or technology from the 50's and 60's.

If nothing else, this should create a lot of interesting discussion leading up to 2008, and perhaps even beyond.

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