Our American culture is becoming polarized between two different philosophies of America: one Republican and the other Democratic. Self-reinforcing media outlets such as Fox News and MSNBC are preaching to the converted, even though one, Fox, seems to be more intransigent in its viewpoint.
As a result, the moderate voter, somewhere in the hazy middle between the two, is rapidly disappearing. That trend should be viewed with alarm by both parties because it carries with it an inability to compromise and, more importantly, an inability to govern.
Major programs such as Obamacare, a healthy improvement to American society in more ways than one, would be impossible to enact today, but so would any changes to Social Security and Medicare. The paralysis besetting any form of Congressional action disables the possibility of any bold new program, or any legislation at all. Even the USA Freedom Act, a no-brainer with huge majorities in the House, barely made it through to the Senate and onto the President’s desk.
Our political campaigns for President are endorsing this analysis of the disappearing undecided voter, targeting their base of supporters, the activists at the ideological extremes, instead of trying to convince moderates. Breaking this log jam may require some form of Congressional action, but even simple reforms hold some hope. Holding primaries for the whole electorate, and just choosing the top two to run off in the general, is one promising idea. Turning back gerrymandering is another.
America always grows during periods of inclusiveness, and we need to adopt some type of election reform to facilitate it.