Should progressives abandon the Democratic Party? Take it over?
Many progressives are fed up with the compromises and sell-outs of the Democratic Party. "I'm not going to vote for the lesser of two evils." Such progressives say that the Democrats are beyond redemption: they'll promise progressive change but will, in the end, deliver more militarism and corporatism.
On the other hand, third-party movements have rarely been successful. At best, they nudge one of the main two parties away from the center. At worst, they draw off votes from one of the main parties and aid the enemy. The ineffectiveness of third parties is due, in large part, to our non-parliamentary form of government. In the conservative movement, disaffected groups, such as religious
conservatives and Tea Partiers, mobilize their anger and take over the
GOP (with substantial help from rich benefactors such as the Koch
brothers). On the Left, disaffected progressives often give up on the "hopelessly
compromised" Democratic Party and vote for a third-party candidate, such
as Nader, or join an advocacy group like MoveOn, Sierra Club, NARAL,
PDA, DFA, or hundreds of similar groups. (See this article.) Should progressives abandon the Democratic Party? Or would they be smarter and more practical by attempting to push the Democratic Party leftwards?
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DFA organizer, Democratic Precinct Committee Officer, writer, and programmer. My op-ed pieces have appeared in the Seattle Times, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and elsewhere. See http://WALiberals.org and http://TruthSite.org for my writing, my (
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