Sunday, July 01, 2007

Independent on Independence Day

Independence Day this year is more than just fireworks and brats on the grill.... it also marks a growing independence in the electorate.

A new, in-depth study by The Washington Post in collaboration with the Kaiser Foundation and Harvard University, finds that a "broad segment of the electorate - about three in 10 voters" call themselves Independents and could well be the power brokers of 2008.

Putting things into perspective usually means 3-D.... in the case of Independents, the study puts them into focus with 5 Ds:

Deliberators... classic swing voters. They may not decide until the curtain closes.

Disillusioned... there must be hordes of these. They think the parties are but two heads of the same dangerous political monster.

Dislocated... no one party fits their social-fiscal outlook. Remember when the GOP was fiscally conservative?

Disguised... wingers on the left and right. So far out on the limb they can no longer see the tree.

Disengaged... "There's going to be an election?"

The voter category that worries me the most is "Disengaged." They are about 25 percent of all independents and are the youngest of any group.... four in ten are younger than 30. It's their future that's the most on the line in 2008.

It's maddening that the political odor emanating from our so-called political leaders distances the very people their actions will most impact.

So, which party or political candidate benefits from the trend toward independence?

Not former House speaker Newt Gingrich. Two-thirds would definitely not vote for him. New York Mayor Bloomberg if he runs as an Independent? Maybe half, while a third said definitely not.

One is left with the impression that there is a great muddle of voters out there milling around and muttering "Who to trust... who to trust."

They are shell-shocked by the deceptions of The Decider and his partner in crime, "Closed-door" Cheney, and their Constitution-gutting, inept cabinet and congressional enablers from both parties.... a host of good-ol'-boy bureaucratic big spenders and bumblers.

Today, Independents are waving the flag, weighing their options and withholding their support.... for now.

No comments: