Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Jackie Salit -- Growing Up Politically: Something We Could All Choose To Do!

Hi Hanksteristas! I hope you will read one of the most honest and direct pieces of campaign hoopla to come across my desk recently -- by Chad Peace over at IVN.

He concludes (I generally like to start at the ending in these cases....) "While independents can be found across the political spectrum, Salit commented on a common trope that brings them together; the unequal access to the political process: “What this independent movement is about is creating a voice so people can participate.”

Amen.

It's a common trope. I like that!

To Jackie from the home base: Your 'Independents Rising' Tour Rocks!

NH
Get Busy!


NEWS FOR INDEPENDENTS
Tuesday, September 25, 2012

JACQUELINE SALIT'S 'INDEPENDENTS RISING' TOUR
  • Living Room Conversations and Changing the Political Culture (By Chad Peace, IVN) Joan Blades, founder of MomsRising.org, and guest speaker Jackie Salit, author of Independents Rising, hosted an event in San Francisco on Saturday to discuss a new political culture in America; one focused on understanding different perspectives. Salit opened the discussion with a light-hearted memory of the barriers she faced at a young age. ”I don’t remember ever becoming an activist, but grew up in a very political family.”  Here's another interview...
  • Three Things Independents Can Do To Make a Difference in 2012 (by Nancy Hanks, The Moderate Voice) Jackie Salit speaks about the independent movement and her new book Independents Rising (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) at Lenora Fulani’s ‘Interviews With a Black Independent’, a monthly series coming to you from the Harlem State Office Building.
  • Political Independents: The Future of Politics (by John Avlon,the Daily Beast) Two timely new books—Mickey Edwards's The Parties Versus the People: How to Turn Republicans and Democrats Into Americans and Jacqueline Salit’s Independents Rising offer valuable insights into the impulses that have inspired a record number of Americans to reject the two parties and demand something different… Independents Rising is a street-level look at the grassroots activism of independent politics, propelling the creation of the New York Independence Party (described as an “anti-party party”) and electing New York City’s independent Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Salit’s book is more of a memoir, a look at the rise of independent politics largely through the prism of her own life...

ATTACKS ON INDEPENDENTS
  • Number Of Independent Voters On The Rise (by Steven Covelman, Staff Reporter, USC University of Southern California Annenberg) The Los Angeles Times reports that more Californians than ever before are registered as no preference voters. "In California the influence of independents is growing," Jeffe said. "Republicans and Democrats must reach out to independents to get out of the primaries." At this point in the presidential race, the amount of independents who remain undecided is small. According to Jeffe’s estimates, only around 5 to 10 percent of independent voters have not picked a candidate yet. [YES, GET OUT OF THE PRIMARIES! VOTE FOR THE PERSON!]
  • What Do We Know About Independent Voters? (By Gina McGalliard, Truthout) Quotes Linda Killian and reads: In keeping with the idea that political views often defy easy categorization, Independent Voters of America now has an online quiz for voters. "[We're trying] to map independent voters' thinking, issues, [and] preferences in more of a three-dimensional way than just a left-right continuum or a conservative-liberal continuum," says Hillsman, who also noted that independent voters tend to be more prevalent among those under 40, entrepreneurs and those who work in the tech sector. "And the example I use very often is libertarians. Democrats think libertarians are very conservative because, by and large, fiscally they are very conservative. Republicans think they're total liberal whack jobs because they don't believe in drug laws," says Hillsman. "They don't believe in a lot of restrictions on personal freedoms, etcetera. So, where do you put those people?"   [NOT QUITE SURE THIS IS AN ATTACK EXACTLY, BUT WHERE do YOU PUT THOSE PEOPLE?????]

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Hankster News of the Day for Independent Voters - September 19


INDEPENDENT VOTERS
  • Analysis: WMUR Poll shows Romney, Obama still fighting over N.H. independent voters (WMUR) For 20 years, independent voters have decided general elections in New Hampshire. The reason is obvious: they are the largest voting block. The most recent voter registration numbers suggest that 38.5 percent of registered voters are “undeclared.”
  • The Romney conundrum: Winning independents but losing overall (By Christian Heinze, The Hill/ Ballot Box) And during that time, Romney has done something with independents Obama has yet to do — lead among them by double digits. In fact, post-Democratic National Convention, a CBS/New York Times poll had Romney up by 11 percentage points with independents, while a CNN survey had him up by 14. Meanwhile, Obama led overall by 3 in the CBS poll and 6 in the CNN survey. Simply put, Romney is winning nationally with independents, but they’re not playing their usual tiebreaking role in elections.

OPEN PRIMARIES
Let the debate on open primary finally begin (ARIZONA DAILY SUN) With two months to go before the votes are counted Nov. 6, we can expect a vigorous campaign by both sides, although we will be interested to see which groups come out in defense of the status quo. On the other hand, any change to the electoral process as substantive as the one that will ushered in by Prop. 121 is bound to have some unintended consequences, and we'll be interested to learn what those scenarios might contain. So far, neither Washington state nor California has encountered major problems with their new open primary systems, and we urge Arizona voters to become educated on the issue and cast an informed vote on Nov. 6.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

What Does President Obama Not Understand About Independent Voters: Structural Political Reform


Morton Kondracke says Prez Obama ignored independents in his acceptance speech at the Democratic Party convention. Personally, I don't think he ignored independent voters -- worse, he has no idea who independents are and therefore addresses independents mistakenly. This is especially disturbing given that independents were his margin of victory, in open primary states, in a hotly contested Democratic primary against Hillary "My Turn" Clinton in 2008, and went on to become his margin of victory in a ruthlessly honest and proud battle against the powers that be in the general election. Fortunately, independents are not depending on the President to fight for us. But he would be smart to call for Congressional Hearings on the state of independent voters, now 40 percent of the electorate, who suffer all manner of indignities and infringement of voting rights.

News of the Day & Notes for Independent Voters - September 13

NOTE: Thanks to all who noticed that I put "August 5" on my September 5 post! Apparently, time's a-wastin'!

ANOTHER NOTE: Big shout-out to Jackie Salit on her national book tour with Independents Rising (Palgrave)! Check out the delightfully energetic review by The View Point below: "Independents Rising is all at once a history book, a mystery/thriller, a soap opera and a textbook on grass-roots political movements. Salit’s writing, crisp and descriptive, takes us through her first-hand journey of becoming involved in politics as a kid, working “both sides of the fence”, working for democrats and republicans in the mid to late 1960’s and early 70’s. She worked in the news business for part of the mid 1970’s for a while and then became involved in the birth of a political party: The New Alliance Party. Fred Newman, the patriarch of this party established in 1979 and Salit remain life-long friends and traveling companions as they both made the somewhat surreal journey through the ups and down of the independent political movements over the next 3 decades."

AND ANOTHER NOTE: Morton Kondracke says Prez Obama ignored independents in his acceptance speech at the Democratic Party convention (see below). Personally, I don't think he ignored independent voters -- worse, he has no idea who independents are and therefore addresses independents mistakenly. This is especially disturbing given that independents were his margin of victory, in open primary states, in a hotly contested Democratic primary against Hillary "My Turn" Clinton in 2008, and went on to become his margin of victory in a ruthlessly honest and proud battle against the powers that be in the general election. Fortunately, independents are not depending on the President to fight for us. But he would be smart to call for Congressional Hearings on the state of independent voters, now 40 percent of the electorate, who suffer all manner of indignities and infringement of voting rights.

INDEPENDENTS RISING
  • Political books to get readers ready for the campaign (By Jean Marie Brown, Forth Worth Star Telegram) Mickey Edwards also looks at Washington's gridlock and how it is harming the country in The Parties Versus the People: How To Turn Republicans and Democrats Into Americans. Yale University Press, $25. Meanwhile, Jacqueline Salit's Independents Rising: Outsider Movements, Third Parties and the Struggle for a Post-Partisan America puts a face to the independents who, she says, were the key to Barack Obama's win in 2008. Palgrave Macmillan, $25
  • Book Review - Independents Rising (The View Point) If you do not know who Jacqueline Salit is and you care about politics, then you need to get yourself introduced to her and her writings. Ms. Salit, along with many others who are discussed in her book has been saving our “political backsides” for the last 30+ years. Without Ms. Salit’s work, we would likely all be political serfs giving favor to our noble lords and masters in the two major political parties and receiving only paltry scraps of progress in return.

INDEPENDENT VOTERS
Majority of Central Mass Voters are Independent - Why It Matters (Adam Joseph Drici, GoLocalWorcester Contributor)  According to new data released by the Massachusetts Secretary of State's office, 289,202 primary voters registered as unenrolled in Worcester County. This group of unenrolled voters represents 57.59 percent of the roughly 500,000 total voters registered in the county. 145,252 voters, or 28.92 percent, registered as Democrats, and only 64,505, or 12.85 percent registered as Republicans. 705 voters registered as Green-Rainbow.

OBAMA
  • Obama's Speech Ignores Independent Voters (By Morton M. Kondracke, Roll Call Senior Editor) Heading into the Charlotte, N.C., convention, President Barack Obama was in trouble with independent voters. But instead of winning them back with appeals to national unity and promises of  compromise, he told them: You've got a stark choice - so choose. He tossed them (us) a few rhetorical bones - a reference to the Simpson-Bowles debt commission he previously ignored, a bow to free enterprise as a jobs engine, acknowledgement that government can't do everything and needs reform.
  • September 13, 2012 - Obama Tops Romney Almost 2-1 In New York, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Gillibrand Does Even Better In Senate Race  -- In today's survey, President Obama leads 94 - 4 percent among Democrats and 58 - 37 percent among independent voters, while Republicans turn to Romney 89 - 10 percent. Obama has big leads among all income and age groups.

OPEN PRIMARIES
  • Primaries Decide Statehouses as Arizona Weighs Top-2 Plan (By Amanda J. Crawford, BloombergBusinessweek) Many states, including Arizona, have sought to change the electoral process through measures ranging from public financing for campaigns and term limits for lawmakers, to overhauls of redistricting. The move to scrap partisan primaries, a more pronounced shift in how elections are conducted, comes as hundreds of statehouse races nationwide are uncontested and there is little or no competitiveness in many districts, including for the U.S. House of Representatives.
  • Judge: Open-primaries initiative qualifies for November ballot (Howard Fischer, Arizona Star)
  • Arizona Supreme Court Upholds ‘Top 2’ Initiative (By Shawn M. Griffiths, IVN) “The problem is people are expressing some kind of dissatisfaction with government,” Dr. Downing replied. “Specifically, they feel that government doesn’t express the consent of the governed.”

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Hankster News of the Day for Independent Voters - August 5


INDEPENDENTVOTING.ORG NETWORKS

INDEPENDENT VOTERS
Can Independent Voters Gain Power and Create Change? (By Jacek Popiel, IVN.us) Today we have the problems, the discontent and a large mass of neglected voters, but as of yet, little response.

ARIZONA
Taking the Politics Out of Redistricting (Or Not)  (Tucson Weekly) 3 to 4:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 20; $100 donation. The seminar is in Phoenix, and in Tucson via videoconferencing.

THE PARTIES VERSUS THE PEOPLE

Mickey Edwards On Democracy's 'Cancer' (NPR/ Fresh Air from WHYY - with COMMENTS) Edwards says party primaries are a major reason why Congress consists of politicians who are committed to sticking with a particular ideology and are unwilling to compromise. The most ideological and partisan candidates tend to succeed in party primaries, Edwards says.

THIRD PARTY
Third-party quandary (Written by Craig Lyons, Portland ME Daily Sun) The biggest influence of third parties is the impact they can have on the dialogue and policies of the two major parties, according to Schmidt.

CNN's Gary Tuchman with Omar Ali and Ana Navarro


CNN's Don Lemon with Dr. Omar Ali and Ana Navarro