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Daniel Gulley

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Increasing voter turnout in primaries would dramatically improve the American system and result in more candidates with moderate positions.

It occurred to me that if I placed a bell curve over this simple linear model of politics I could show the distribution of American political attitudes.

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Reactionary/Conservative/Moderate/Liberal/Radical

I divided the moderates such that conservative moderates are located from center to 1 standard deviation(SD) to the right of the mean and liberal moderates are from center to 1 SD to the left of the mean.

What this shows is that the majority of Americans are in the middle of the political spectrum.

This is where I may coin a term "the 68%". The 68% are the majority of Americans. They are working class Americans, students, teachers, parents, grandparents and veterans. They are by definition moderate being somewhere to the right and left of center and everywhere in between.

The two parties usually employ sensitive issues to fire up the base and to divide and distract those people in the middle of the political spectrum, the 68%. They agree on virtually all accounts except for abortion, and maybe gay marriage. Regardless these two issues are deployed every election cycle to divide and distract, and after every cycle the status quo, the state of affairs on abortion and same-sex marriage, remains the same.

But if most Americans are somewhere in the middle, why do our candidates come from the left and right of center?

Voter turnout in the primaries is very low compared to during the general election, and sometimes it is as low as 1% or lower (it averages probably around 10-15% but can get as high as 25-30%).

The result is the simple truth that while those in the middle of the political spectrum, the moderate majority decides who will be our president, it is those people on the far left and right (the fringes) that decide who the two candidates will be. In essence the 68% do choose who will be President but it is the 1% and the 10% that decide who will run.

Primaries are just as important as general elections!!!

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    Dec 17 2012: Daniel, Didn't the republicians put up enough candidates in the primaries? I don't think that the number of voters is, in my opinion, of primary concern. I would think that the lack of understanding government, economics, diplomacy, and in general the Constitution is .. or should be ... of greater concern. Further I believe this to be true of both parties.

    I have chosen to be a independent .. however, in the primaries the liberterian made the most sense in solving domestic and economic problems .. I was not so sure of his diplomatic skills or his thoughts on world affairs, but that is my opinion.

    On your attacks on Pat and your statement on FOX news you have made clear where you stand ... but lets set that aside for a second.

    As a Polisi major how do you go about being elected. Rule # 1 is never tell the whole truth .. people would go screaming off into the night and you would never get out of the primaries. Rule # 2: Tell em what they want to hear. It worked in Argintina and it worked again in the USA. Rule # 3: Divide them. Class warfare is the simplest means and the most effective and has been a political tool from the begining. and on and on .... You know the drill.

    Just as a matter of discussion ... if the people were all well verses in political science, economics, geo politics, the true state of Americas problems (including the FED), bailouts, etc ..., and the Constitution who would have been the final two in the election?

    Just curious. Dogenes would have laughed in passing these two.
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      Dec 18 2012: I would not say that I have attacked anyone. Rather I was debating Mr. Gilbert i.e putting forth premises in support of a conclusion. I don't think demanding reason and logical consistency is an attack.

      I have not "made it clear where I stand" but I will. I am a registered Republican and have been since I registered to vote at age 18.

      However I am obviously not like the tea party types who have come to exert great influence within the GOP.

      I am a moderate Republican one of the last of a dying breed. The way in which I differ from many of my fellow republicans and really many democrats is that I let reason and knowledge guide my vote regardless if that means I break from the parties platform.

      I believe that the first Amendment means that we cannot canonize the bible in our legal code.

      I am pro-gun. If they banned guns I would follow the ban but to do so it can not be an ordinary act of congress they must amend the constitution as the constitution demands. This is why the Brady bill was considered unconstitutional. Amending the constitution can only be done with a super majority 66% of both houses or of the various state legislatures).

      I also believe the GOP is on the wrong side of reason on climate change. Did I mention I live in Kentucky (BIG BLUE NATION)? Today 12/17/2012. In Lexington there was a huge thunderstorm with a lot of hail. If we are getting any precipitation this time of year it should be cold rain or snow. There's a lot more evidence for climate change but I have ranted enough there is scientific consensus.

      The point the contemporary GOP is on the wrong side of reason. Some dare I say are anti-intellectual (tea party).

      The GOP in the past could enter the public forum with reason and work together for the common good.

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