Tuesday, June 12, 2007


  • Why Poll New Hampshire Without Independents????? (Marc Ambinder, The Atlantic)
  • Obama, Thompson Gain on Clinton, Giuliani, Poll Shows-Independents voting in the Democratic primary say they favor unity over experience by more than 2-to-1. (Bloomberg News)
  • MS: Primary ruling a mixed bag for Dems: Victorious in lawsuit, party sees ID measure they oppose tacked on (Clarion Ledger)
  • Mike Bloomberg could buy the White House (Salon)


jeff roby said...

From AmericaBlog:

"Speaking as a private citizen, no, no, I could not support (Giuliani)," said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, which has about a half-million members. "The 20 years I've been involved in politics, the life issue has been at the very top. How could I turn my back on that?"

"Perkins said that should Giuliani win the nomination, he would vote for a third-party candidate who reflected his values. "It wouldn't be the first time," Perkins added in an interview last week."

My point being that saying "independents think this" or "independents believe that" is tricky business. I do want an independent force that reflects my values. I'm not stupid about it. I won't insist that my candidates support the Cleveland Indians. If CUIP purports to represent the progressive wing of the independent movement, then by implication there is a reactionary wing of the independent movement as well.

I'm not trying to divide independents. I'm pointing out that there are divisions and we will get schlonged if we ignore that. Remember the Reform Party.

jeff roby said...

Chris Bowers had a fascinating post on MyDD.com, "The Importance Of Swing ACTIVISTS."

I urge people to read it, but in a nutshell, the argument is that progressives are better served by appealing to the more radical base of the Democratic Party, rather than to independents (swing voters), because independents are (1) more convervative than the base of the Democratic Party, and (2) less like to contribute time and money to progressive candidates. Therefore, pandering to independents conservatizes progressive candidates, with little in return.

How do we challenge that? I would agree that independents IN THE AGGREGATE poll more conservatively ("moderately") than left Democrats. But I am not an aggregate! And I am not a moderate! There are independents that fit the mold, but so what?

The point is that I believe the independent movement must assert its radicalism. Radical independents allied with left Democrats can be an awesome force. But independence from the two-party Beltway power brokers is only necessary. It is not sufficient.