January 26, 2010

blogSpan_d8b44.jpg

(Pick which one is going to get all rogue and strange)

Fear of the independent voter. It's certainly been around for a while. Probably since there was such a thing as a secret ballot. In 1975 the big worry was the coming election in 1976. Who were all those independent voters and were they really going to vote another Republican into the White House? The concern was mostly for the demise of the two-party system. Were they irrelevant?

On May 7, 1975, NPR ran a National Town Meeting entitled "The Independent Vote: Is It Killing the Two Party System?" Hosting the discussion was Robert Novak and the panel consisted of Arthur Schlesinger, Louis Harris and Richard Obenshain, co-chair of the RNC.

Arthur Schlesinger: “No one can doubt that the two-party system is in grave trouble. And no one can doubt the rise of independent voting. But I think the rise of independent voting is the consequence, rather than the cause of the crisis of the party system. The real question, it seems to me is why is the party system in this trouble, why have party loyalties become so weak, party affiliations so fluid, party organizations so irrelevant?”

Then as now, the difficulty in pinning down who the independent voter was and what made them tick. But the real question was if two party politics was going to head into obscurity.

They wondered in 1975 - they worry in 2010. No change.

Can you help us out?

For 17 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit, but now Facebook is drowning us in an ocean of right wing lies. Please give a one-time or recurring donation, or buy a year's subscription for an ad-free experience. Thank you.

Discussion

We are currently migrating to Disqus

On May 14, 2022, we started migrating our comments from Insticator back to Disqus. During this transition period, some posts will have Insticator and some Disqus. For more information on the transition, as well as information regarding old C&L accounts, please see this post.


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service for information on our posting policy.