By Hayden Welty ’19
In this country the biggest group of voters are moderate, but neither party gives them a voice.
According to the Pew research center, today, 92 percent of Republicans are to the right of the median Democrat, and 94 percent of Democrats are to the left of the median Republican.
However, presidential exit polls consistently show that more than 40 percent of voters say they are moderate (30 percent self-identify as conservative and 20 percent as liberal).
Another Gallup poll says that 43 percent of voters classify themselves as independent, which is an all-time record.
In a recent survey, the nonpartisan PollingReport.com illustrated where voters stand on specific issues.
It found that 69 percent believe the government should do more about climate change (9 percent still believe it’s a hoax), 57 percent think that in most cases abortion should be legal.
58 percent want to give illegal immigrants a chance to become citizens, while 51 percent don’t want to accept any Syrian refugees.
63 percent favor increasing taxes on the wealthy, but 48 percent don’t want to require employers to offer paid leave.
This shows that in reality most voters are moderate.
But, as a result of the formal Pew findings, politicians pander to their party base and political polarization causes both parties to adopt more and more extreme policies.
This forces moderates to choose between two unappealing options.
In reality, candidates should be appealing to the middle, but that is not the case.
This stratification has come to the forefront of upcoming 2016 presidential primaries as Bernie Sanders, a 70-year-old socialist, and Donald Trump, a circus peanut, have a serious chance to win the nomination for their respective parties.
Michael Bloomberg has confirmed that he is considering running for president.
Bloomberg is the former mayor of New York City between 2002 and 2013.
He is known for being pro-choice, pro-gay marriage and pro-gun control.
According to Forbes magazine, he has a net worth of $36.8 billion and is the eighth richest person in America, so he could easily fund his campaign; in fact, it has been rumored that he is willing to spend up to $1 billion.
Mr. Bloomberg closed New York City’s $6 billion deficit and left his successor with a balanced budget in 2013.
He championed the move to ban smoking from public places and is decisively pro-business and pro-trade.
He could gain widespread support from moderates who are not represented by extremist nominees like Sanders and Trump.
Think it about it this way: The parties are moving farther away from one another on the political spectrum. Mr. Bloomberg would appear as a viable alternative compared to bickering parties.
I believe he has a chance not just to be a one-off, but establish a robust centrist movement and make a serious bid for the presidency.