- Reason Awakes -

Unhappy With Your Current Political Options?

 
Do you find it difficult to associate yourself with either of the two major political parties in the United States today? 

Are you uncomfortable with the extent to which the far right controls the Republican Party and the far left controls the Democratic Party? 

Do you often find yourself more comfortable with moderate Democrats on social issues and mainstream (as opposed to populist/economic nationalist) Republicans on economic and tax issues? 

Do you find some aspects of libertarianism appealing but feel that the government should play a larger role than the libertarians support (Particularly on issues of public health)? 

Are you frustrated with the way the electoral process tends to present the independent voter with, at best, the lesser of two evils?

Are you dismayed by the Democrats antipathy for free markets and the tendency of the Republicans to be more pro-business and protectionist than pro-free market?

Are you upset by the willingness of both parties to hand out favors to special interest groups in return for money?

Are you frustrated with the inability of our elected officials to hammer out reasonable compromises? 

Are you afraid to vote for third party candidates because it will only succeed in electing the Party you like the least?

Do you feel that divided government may be best because you don't trust either party to govern responsibly?

If you answered "yes" to most of these questions, you may have found a new home with a centrist political organization made up of like minded people who want to see the political process work and who do not view themselves as fully liberal or fully conservative. 

Here's What to Do (This section will be continuously during the first year of the Biden administration.  (last modified 9/21/21)

We have added a new page to the web site: Score Card for the Biden Administration. The intent is to put an objective stake in the sand now (Mid Year 2021), on which we intend to judge the current administration toward the end of the first term. The scorecard is still under construction, so some of the target values still need to be determined. We will also be providing the data sources that we will use to determine the target values. For the most part, the targets were set at simply better than the 2019 values. In some cases, like inflation, we have moved the target. In the case of inflation, the target was increased to reflect current realities. Let us know what you think.

Thanks to all centrists who voted in the 2020 general election. Centrist government will happen when elected officials expect that they have to appeal to the center rather than their base in order to get elected and when politicians realize that in order to get things done they have to compromise with the other side. This will only happen if centrists vote in large numbers. The results of the 2018 mid-terms clearly suggest that the Democrats were able to take control of the House by appealing to centrist voters in swing districts. The media-hyped successes of far left Democratic candidates, like AOC, in safe Democratic districts, have tended to obscure this fact.  It is important that Democrats realize that Biden won because he was the most acceptable candidate to moderate Democrats, Republicans and independents. The extent to which the Democrats lost ground in the House in 2020 was probably the result of the very public leftward tilt of the party during the primaries and the Democratic Convention.

We supported the Biden-Harris ticket over the Trump-Pence choice, and look forward to a more sane and predictable presidency. 

Having said that, we need to be mindful that the Democratic Party remains committed to some very far left positions.  The Democrats have taken the Senate. They may eventually revoke the filibuster rule and run the Senate by simple majority rule. In the long run, this is a mistake for either party to do. As party dominance shifts, legislation that lacks bipartisan support will be repealed, leading to an unpredictable political and economic environment.  

Even if the Democrats do not overturn the filibuster rule, there are many issues, including tax/budget legislation, on which the Democrats only need a simple majority to rule via the reconciliation process. This is the way that Obama Care was passed without any Republican support and the 2017 tax law changes were passed without any Democratic support. It is the vehicle that the Democrats hope to use to pass their $3.5 trillion "Build Back Better" plan. We view the way in which the reconciliation process has been used by both parties as a mistake, with all of the pitfalls of repealing the filibuster rule.

Now that the Democrats have taken control of the Presidency, the House, and the Senate we hope that they will realize that this is  a mandate to govern responsibly and not a mandate for enacting a far left agenda. If they use the opportunity to govern in a centrist fashion, they might retain control of the federal government for the foreseeable future. If instead they push through a radical agenda, they will inevitably lose control of the legislature in two years and the presidency in four. This may well be a golden opportunity for the Democratic Party, and the country, if the Democrats have the self control to embrace it.

Review of the Biden administration to date:

So far the Biden administration has been refreshing in tone but occasionally troubling in content.

The Stimulus Package

The biggest thing that has come out of the Biden administration and Congress is the $1.9 trillion stimulus package. The big risk given the scale of the package is that it is too much stimulus and that it will ignite inflation. If it does, there will be significant political pressure on the Federal Reserve not to raise interest rates to control the inflation. If the Fed does not act, inflation can gain a foothold and it will be difficult to ultimately reign it in. When the Fed eventually does raise interest rates, it will make the interest cost of financing the now significantly bigger national debt much larger.

We hope that the recovery is quick in terms of both growth and employment and that inflation remains near the Fed's target of 2-2.5%. Whether this will be the case depends on the rest of the Democratic agenda. Onerous regulations, pro union rules and legislation, a $15/hour minimum wage and higher corporate, capital gains, and income taxes will all act to make the rebound in employment less than we would all hope for.

The Infrastructure Package

Infrastructure improvement is an issue on which there is room for bipartisan action. We were pleased to see a $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package emerge. We are very disappointed that the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, including Nancy Pelosi, have decided that they will not support the bipartisan bill unless they can also get their $3.5 trillion "Build Back Better" plan approved. We hope that trough the efforts of moderate Democrats like Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, the Democrats will realize that they are overplaying their hand and rapidly approve the bipartisan bill without conditions.

The bipartisan proposal on infrastructure is a good compromise. Unfortunately, the desire on the part of some Democrats to have their cake and eat it too may sabotage the compromise. If the bipartisan compromise has any meaning at all  it must mean that the Democrats forego, at least for this session of Congress, any attempts to pass the rest of their "infrastructure" program. At the moment nine centrist Democratic congressmen are insisting that the bi-partisan infrastructure bill pass first before they will consider the $3.5 trillion proposal. Nancy Pelosi insists that she wants both or nothing at all. We can only hope that the centrist Democrats hold their ground.

The Tax Proposal

In our view, the 2017 tax law changes went too far by reducing the corporate income tax to 21%
from 35%. We have no problem with raising it back to 28%. It must be remembered that taxing corporations is a vehicle for taxing individuals and any increase in the corporate income tax will adversely affect investors, customers and employees to some degree. We will have more to say on this issue once more of the details of the Biden tax plan are revealed.

Afganistan

The New Independent Party platform is focused mostly on domestic policy. This is not because we believe international affairs are unimportant. Since WW II the United States has had a largely bipartisan approach to foreign policy with a few notable exceptions. The decision to leave Afganistan is a complicated one and we recognize good arguments on both sides. We do agree with the Biden administration that if we chose to stay we would have needed a larger military presence than we have been maintaining of late. The evidence for this was the gradual loss of territory to the Taliban in recent months.  It is unfortunate that our withdrawal was so chaotic. Those Afgans who had stood with us in the conflict deserved to be treated better. We are reluctant to draw the conclusion that a slower withdrawal would have gone better. We just don't know.

COVID 19

Things were looking good for dealing with COVID 19 mid summer. Unfortunately, vaccine resistance and the Delta variant set us back. We think that the Biden administrations embrace of vaccine and mask mandates is fully justified given he impact of the current wave of infections on hospital capacity. Whether the use of OSHA to enforce the vaccine mandate will work is a legal question on which we are agnostic. We hope it does.

Click here for a look at our new Score Card for the Biden Administration. The intent is to provide an objective basis for evaluating the Biden Administration over time. Aspects of the score card are still under construction.


Also:

Please read the Concept statement and review the Party's Platform. Let us know how you feel about the issues raised by clicking: Strongly Agree, Agree, Disagree, Strongly Disagree, Not Sure, or Don't Care, at the end of each plank.

If you like the Concept and the Platform, please join the New Independent Party and add your voice to ours. The first task is to demonstrate that we constitute a powerful voting block.




Join in the Discussion

Members and interested visitors are invited to participate in the discussion board on this web site. If you are interested in participating in the discussion go to the New Independent Party Blog  section.

Have a Question? Contact Us.

If you have a question, send us an email, using the form found on the  Contact Us.

Join Other Centrist Groups

We are not in competition with other centrist groups and encourage you to seek out these groups and actively participate in them. Other groups that we are aware of include: No Labels, The Centrist Project, the Bipartisan Policy Center, the Reformicon movement, Third Way, Level the Playing Field, Represent.Us, the Campaign Legal Center, and FairVote. If you are aware of other groups that should be included in this list please contact us and let us know.

 


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