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Mon May 2, 2016, 08:33 PM

Who are "independents" really? Unbiased, critical thinkers?

First, my own thoughts on so-called "independents":

Some refer to themselves as independent or non-affiliated because they have what they consider to be "middle-of-the-road" positions on various issues. Or because they are 'liberal' on some issues and 'conservative' on others. To be honest, I don't think such folks typically make much sense. They are often folks who fail to see how social and economic issues are linked. Of course, you also have those who fail to see how they are distinct. The truth is they are both linked and distinct--picture a Venn Diagram.

Others refer to themselves as "independent" simply because they think it gives the impression that they are unbiased, critical thinkers, even though they are basically party loyalists (or because they're Libertarians and just don't call themselves that).

And others refer to themselves that way because they're just extremist Republicans--they're disappointed that the Republican Party isn't bringing back slavery and swapping the US Constitution out for the Bible. For instance, I've read that nearly half of Tea Party members refer to themselves as "independent."

Finally, an article on the topic: "The growing myth of the 'independent' voter"

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Reply Who are "independents" really? Unbiased, critical thinkers? (Original post)
Garrett78 May 2016 OP
guytonfox May 2016 #1
bigwillq May 2016 #18
ShrimpPoboy May 2016 #2
Garrett78 May 2016 #15
Bjorn Against May 2016 #3
Garrett78 May 2016 #10
Bjorn Against May 2016 #14
Garrett78 May 2016 #16
Bjorn Against May 2016 #17
Garrett78 May 2016 #21
Bjorn Against May 2016 #26
Garrett78 May 2016 #29
brush May 2016 #51
Garrett78 May 2016 #57
floriduck May 2016 #79
Garrett78 May 2016 #81
floriduck May 2016 #82
Hoyt May 2016 #4
villager May 2016 #7
Tierra_y_Libertad May 2016 #5
Garrett78 May 2016 #19
sadoldgirl May 2016 #6
Garrett78 May 2016 #23
Zorra May 2016 #8
Garrett78 May 2016 #12
dmosh42 May 2016 #83
immoderate May 2016 #9
frylock May 2016 #13
Garrett78 May 2016 #20
frylock May 2016 #22
Garrett78 May 2016 #25
immoderate May 2016 #41
JudyM May 2016 #40
frylock May 2016 #11
LiberalFighter May 2016 #24
CompanyFirstSergeant May 2016 #27
michaz May 2016 #28
Garrett78 May 2016 #30
michaz May 2016 #32
Garrett78 May 2016 #34
michaz May 2016 #37
Garrett78 May 2016 #38
michaz May 2016 #39
Garrett78 May 2016 #42
michaz May 2016 #46
Yurovsky May 2016 #31
Garrett78 May 2016 #33
AgingAmerican May 2016 #35
Garrett78 May 2016 #36
AgingAmerican May 2016 #45
Garrett78 May 2016 #56
bjo59 May 2016 #43
pinebox May 2016 #44
nolabels May 2016 #48
brush May 2016 #53
dana_b May 2016 #63
randome May 2016 #47
VulgarPoet May 2016 #49
nemo137 May 2016 #55
Garrett78 May 2016 #58
LWolf May 2016 #50
yellowcanine May 2016 #52
Garrett78 May 2016 #60
democrank May 2016 #54
seaglass May 2016 #59
Garrett78 May 2016 #61
seaglass May 2016 #62
dana_b May 2016 #64
Garrett78 May 2016 #65
dana_b May 2016 #66
Garrett78 May 2016 #67
dana_b May 2016 #68
Garrett78 May 2016 #70
TransitJohn May 2016 #69
Garrett78 May 2016 #72
TransitJohn May 2016 #73
Garrett78 May 2016 #76
pdsimdars May 2016 #71
Garrett78 May 2016 #74
leeroysphitz May 2016 #75
Garrett78 May 2016 #77
Tierra_y_Libertad May 2016 #78
Garrett78 May 2016 #80
Tierra_y_Libertad May 2016 #84
Garrett78 May 2016 #85
lumberjack_jeff May 2016 #86
Garrett78 May 2016 #87
lumberjack_jeff May 2016 #88

Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:36 PM

1. OMG!!!

I so agree with u!!!

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Response to guytonfox (Reply #1)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:24 PM

18. Hello.

 

Welcome to DU!

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:36 PM

2. Some just dont feel represented by the parties in power

And so don't want to join the club.

Everyone's got their reasons I'm sure. Its not a monolithic group obviously.

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Response to ShrimpPoboy (Reply #2)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:12 PM

15. Agreed, it's not a monolithic group.

As I made clear in my OP, I agree with you that there are different reasons why people self-identify as "independent." But, for the most part, I don't think they're the unbiased, anti-establishment saints some make them out to be.

Most end up voting for either Democrats or Republicans. Those who want to vote Green or Libertarian are likely to simply join one of those parties.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:41 PM

3. Independents are the people whose votes you need to win

The author of the OP is obviously a person who wants Democrats to lose every single election because it is impossible to win an election without independent votes.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #3)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:03 PM

10. I'm not sure where you get the idea that I want Democrats to lose every single election.

Some who refer to themselves as "independent" are going to vote for Democratic candidates. Others won't. But that's not really the point of the thread.

Winning the so-called "independent" vote is obviously not vital. Obama lost the overall independent vote in 2012 and lost the independent vote by double digits in the crucial state of Ohio. But of course he needed some votes from that group of voters. I'm certainly not disputing that.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #10)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:12 PM

14. Well you are not going to get any independent votes if Democrats push crap like we see in the OP

Obama may not have won the majority of independents but the ones he did win were absolutely crucial to his victory. If you want to push insulting crap like this OP you can kiss those crucial votes bye bye.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #14)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:17 PM

16. What's insulting about my OP?

Polls show 41% of Tea Party members identify as "independent." They are right wing extremists.

Some no doubt identify as "independent" because they like the impression it gives, but they end up voting for mainstream Democrats or Republicans when the election rolls around.

Others are "middle-of-the-road" in one way or another.

Some are opposed to both major parties--some of whom end up joining another party.

Do you disagree with any of the above? What's insulting about those points?

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #16)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:23 PM

17. The fact that you suggest they are a myth is insulting

Independents come in a large variety and they hold views across the political spectrum but they are real people and it is insulting to put the word independents in quotation marks and pretend they are a myth.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #17)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:32 PM

21. I put the term in quotes because clearly not all are "independent" in any true sense.

The person who wrote the article I posted used the term "myth" because there are myths about who independent voters are, not because he's denying their existence.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #21)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:44 PM

26. If a person does not belong to a political party they are an independent

It is true that most of them lean to one end of the spectrum or the other, but it is also true that most of them are not party loyalists. I am an independent that would never even consider voting for a Republican, but I have no problem with voting Third Party. Many other Independents will choose not to vote at all if the candidates don't represent them.

I am an independent who always votes and mostly votes Democratic but I pledge no loyalty to the party and I will consider third party if the Democrats push a bad candidate.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #26)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:59 PM

29. Sure.

Nothing you just wrote conflicts with what I wrote. Again, I think different people have different reasons. That said, I think the 'myth' is that most or all independents are people who are anti-establishment or anti-label or unbiased.

I, too, have no problem with voting third party (usually Green) in certain circumstances.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #17)

Tue May 3, 2016, 09:23 AM

51. What? The OP is not saying that at all.

Read it again.

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Response to brush (Reply #51)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:02 PM

57. Yeah, I addressed that above.

The author of the article I posted isn't saying "independent" voters are a myth. But there are myths surrounding who they are and how they vote.

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Response to Bjorn Against (Reply #17)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:30 PM

79. And they are the largest of the electorate at 44% of all voters.

 

We can say they have issues with both Dems and GOPers, or they are rebellious in nature, or that the two main parties have done a poor job of making them feel needed in either party. But they exist for a reason, whatever that is. And united, they have serious voter power.

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Response to floriduck (Reply #79)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:36 PM

81. They aren't united, though.

That's my point. Some who self-identify as "independent" are radically opposed to others who self-identify as "independent."

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #81)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:37 PM

82. I agree. But that could change based on the bizarre nature of this years election. nm

 

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:45 PM

4. Most "Independents" I've met are Libertarians. Most of them are racist and callous.

I'm in South, so that might have something to do with it.

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Response to Hoyt (Reply #4)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:50 PM

7. Might have a lot to do with it. nt

 

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:47 PM

5. People who refuse to vote for labels and think for themselves.

 

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Response to Tierra_y_Libertad (Reply #5)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:28 PM

19. That applies across the spectrum.

There are no doubt both affiliated and non-affiliated people who are issue-based voters. People who vote the way they do because of a platform and not a label. That's certainly not true only for "independents." As I pointed out in the OP, many Tea Party members self-identify as "independent." They certainly aren't anti-label, nor are they people I care to have on my side.

"Thinking for themselves" is one of those phrases about which one should think critically. *Everyone* is influenced in some way by other people, by books, by other media, etc.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:50 PM

6. It would be interesting to see a long term

study of who left either party and why.
I don't know of anything like it.

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Response to sadoldgirl (Reply #6)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:39 PM

23. It would.

There will be some, of course, who have never been registered with a party. Which doesn't mean they don't ever vote for Democrats or Republicans. In fact, many "independents" vote regularly for one or the other, as surveys have indicated. Some don't vote much at all. Some vote for a 3rd party. Some vote for Democrats *and* Republicans *and* 3rd Party candidates.

My only point is that "independent" isn't synonymous with "unbiased" or "anti-establishment" or "anti-mainstream" or "anti-label" or "critical thinker." Which is the sort of mythology that the author -- in the article I posted -- is referring to.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:51 PM

8. People like me, who have been loyal Democrats for over 4 decades,

and are now becoming independents because of the corporatist takeover of the democratic party.

I was considering registering a Green, but your many pro-Clinton posts convinced me that the Green Party is just more of the same corporatist bullshit too.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #8)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:05 PM

12. I can't recall making a pro-Clinton post.

Pointing out the fact that she's going to be the nominee is not the same as expressing an opinion, pro or con, about Clinton.

And I'm really not sure what any of this has to do with the Green Party.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #8)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:47 PM

83. I am registered as "unaffiliated", or independent of any party. Life member of int'l union,....

and lean progressive left. Basically I have supported Dems as a lesser of two evils, but they have become somewhat non-enthusiastic about supporting working people, but are very interested in that big corporation money. Bernie is my age, and his thinking pretty well matches my ideas. We both remember what a real Democrat was in the 1950s and 60s, and the Clintons don't fit. Yeah, I'll vote for HRC when it comes to her or a Repuke, but I know she'll revert to her Walmart ideas when the cheering stops.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 08:56 PM

9. Then there are those of us who think the Democrats really suck, and the Republicans...

 

Last edited Mon May 2, 2016, 11:07 PM - Edit history (1)

are even worse! When I first voted, the Democrats wanted me to die in Vietnam, bad enough to want to beat me up for demonstrating. The Democrats since then have been Reaganites. They want to profit off me going to jail for getting high. The Democrats are not democratic.

--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #9)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:05 PM

13. +++

Neither Party represents my interests.

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Response to frylock (Reply #13)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:29 PM

20. What are your interests?

Just wondering.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #20)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:37 PM

22. Fair wages, fair trade, renewable energy, common-sense drug laws, non-interventionism.

Just a few items off the top.

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Response to frylock (Reply #22)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:41 PM

25. Sounds like Green Party to me. FWIW, I support those things, as well.

I'm curious, have you considered registering as a Green? If not, why not?

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #25)

Mon May 2, 2016, 11:20 PM

41. I register as a Democrat. I mostly dislike the Democrats but...

 

the states I've lived in have closed primaries. I register to maximize my personal power. And in primaries I not only get an extra vote, but it carries more weight.

Bernie is a politician I've followed since he was mayor of Burlington. He is rare in that I like (trust) him. Sometimes I support local candidates. But, I rate this as a once in a lifetime event, the chance to vote for a person I like for president.

--imm

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Response to frylock (Reply #22)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:46 PM

40. Sounds like Bernie to me. And my issues as well.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:04 PM

11. I'm registered as 'No Party Preference' because I have no Party preference.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:40 PM

24. Blowing in the wind.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:49 PM

27. "Or because they are 'liberal' on some issues and 'conservative' on others."

 

I like the outdoors but carry a gun when I am there.

Environmentalism and pro Second Amendment. Linked or distinct?

I believe that women earning as much as men benefits women and men.

Linked or distinct?

They're disappointed that the Republican Party isn't bringing back slavery and swapping the US Constitution out for the Bible.


Wow, I live in New York. I have never met anyone like that.

Maybe if I lived on the moon....







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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 09:51 PM

28. Or...they are just simply able to think for themselves without having to be told how to think. n/t

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Response to michaz (Reply #28)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:03 PM

30. See post #19.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #30)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:09 PM

32. Guess this proves my point! n/t

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Response to michaz (Reply #32)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:15 PM

34. Which is what?

Everyone is influenced by other people, by media, etc. Everyone. So, "think for themselves" is a rather empty phrase. What does it mean to you?

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #34)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:34 PM

37. Some people are better at thinking for themselves than others.

Some people are easily persuaded or easily brainwashed. One can even belong to a certain party and still not agree with everything the party stands for since they can "reason" or think for themselves. One can be influenced by others up to a point, yet they can still think for themselves and realize it. It seems to me with all this back and forth crap going on with the Hillary and Sanders supporters that people are trying to convince others to vote "their way." It actually is a turn off and with some people will discourage them to possibly not vote or to never vote for the person they didn't vote for in the primaries if their candidate doesn't make it. Anger is not advantageous and I see a lot of it on DU. I am a Democrat. I also happen to be in the Sanders corner for many reasons. My reasons are mine, not yours or anyone else's just as my vote is mine. I am 66 years old. I am not easily persuaded by people or what I read or hear. I can use my "empty phrase" of thinking for myself along with some good old fashion common sense. Thinking for one's self is far from empty.

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Response to michaz (Reply #37)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:39 PM

38. I don't have much issue with any of what you just wrote.

And I'm not spending any time trying to convince people who to vote for.

Yes, some people (regardless of political affiliation) vote the way they vote purely because of how a loved one votes or because of a label or some other mindless reason. Again, that's true across the spectrum.

Call it ironic, but "thinking for themselves" seems to be a phrase about which there should be more critical thought. Clearly everyone is influenced by friends, family, strangers, events, environment, history, media, etc.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #38)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:44 PM

39. And add all that to being able to think for themselves and you will have it.

Being able to think for yourself is critical. Being able to take others comments, the good and the bad, and interjecting your own brain cells and there you have it. Thinking for yourself.

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Response to michaz (Reply #39)

Mon May 2, 2016, 11:35 PM

42. Okay.

I guess my point is that "independents" don't have a monopoly on that. I certainly don't think Tea Party members, about half of whom self-identify as "independent," are critical thinkers. They're reactionaries.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #42)

Tue May 3, 2016, 07:17 AM

46. Obviously any one that chooses to can be an independent. It is their choice. But

anyone can use their head, whether in a party or not.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:07 PM

31. Some people are just not that engaged...

doesn't make them bad people. I have a friend who spends virtually all of her time caring for a severely disabled child. I don't even know if she's ever voted, she's just 24/7 involved with her child. Sure, she would probably vote D if she bothered, but usually when I see her I'm not talking politics, I'm checking to see if she needs a hand or would like me to drop by with something to eat. I don't usually go into campaign mode around her, I just try to be supportive. If she doesn't care about politics, I'm not going to force the issue. She's got her hands full.

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Response to Yurovsky (Reply #31)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:14 PM

33. Absolutely.

I suspect the vast majority of people don't pay very close attention to party politics. The likes of people who post on DU are the exception, and not the rule.

Of those who don't pay close attention to party politics, some are registered and some aren't. Of those who are registered, some vote regularly, some vote infrequently and some don't vote at all. Of those who are registered, some are registered with a particular party and some aren't.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:16 PM

35. They are 40% of the electorate

 

That's who they are.

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Response to AgingAmerican (Reply #35)

Mon May 2, 2016, 10:21 PM

36. But most typically vote for one party or the other.

My OP and the article I posted aren't about percentages so much as about how "independents" vote.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #36)

Tue May 3, 2016, 04:16 AM

45. They are 40% of the electorate

 

Bigger than either party

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Response to AgingAmerican (Reply #45)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:01 PM

56. Yet most are, in fact, party loyalists.

We're just repeating ourselves now.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 12:45 AM

43. Some people are registered Independents because they are sick to death of the

corrupted Democratic Party.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 12:55 AM

44. I'm an indy

 

And I will never be part of the Democratic Party.

I switched my affiliation to caucus for Bernie and have since switched it back but the more and more I see, I have fully decided not to be a member. I debated about it but honestly it was the vitriol which I see here among Hillary supporters that ultimately swayed my decision.

I realize that I have little ion common with them. Truly, I am much farther to the left than they are and if that makes me a fringe candidate then so be it. What I believe in they don't. It's quite obvious they don't really care what I think especially with DWS' latest comments about Indy voters.

You know what Debbie, I don't really give a damn what you think. My vote is my own and you and nobody else owns that.

This is what I stand for and what I believe in and sadly, the Democratic Party doesn't. I am a progressive and to me, Hillary is a reactionary.

*Healthcare for all
*Immigration reform
*Everyone who works full time needs to have a livingwage
*Equality
*Education should be free
*Ending student loan debt. Completely.
*Holding Wall Street and big banks responsible
*We should help those who need it, the sick, the needy, the homeless, the poor, the elderly
*A nation that takes care of the homeless by providing housing, education, job training and community gardens in empty buildings like hospitals. Convert them all over.
*Ending tax loopholes and tax breaks for the 1% and big corporations. Fine companies who move jobs overseas
*More renewable energy. Every gas station in America should have alternative fuels and charging stations.
*End fracking. Now.
*More funding & expansion for our national Parks, refuges, wilderness areas and monuments
*Ending the hunting of Wolves and better protection for endangered species
*Art, music & PE should be in every school across America. Required.
*Equal pay.
*End any and all forms of discrimination against gays
*We have a minimum wage. It’s time we have a maximum wage!
*Holding people like Beck and Limbaugh accountable for their hate
*Broadband internet for all, everywhere. It’s a utility.
*Beefing up and expanding things like social security and medicare/medicaid
*Housing for all.
*Fairness in credit and reporting.
*Legalization of pot
*Ending for profit private prisons
*Less jail time for non-violent offenders and better life counseling for addicts
*Ending the death penalty except in the very most extreme cases
*Gun reform. Better background checks. Ending easy access to firearms. Only gun stores allowed to sell guns.
*Freedom of religion, ending bigotry and hate for others based on beliefs.
*Contraception for all, freely provided
*GMO’s gotta go. Now.
*Ending wars & closing down military bases…cutting defense
*Ending making it harder to vote.
*Wind energy, expanding it


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Response to pinebox (Reply #44)

Tue May 3, 2016, 07:40 AM

48. Registrared Green for over twenty years but changed it to (D) for Bernie in California

Also contributed financially to him and feel proud for it.

Thanks to Bernie i know there are many more out there like me

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Response to pinebox (Reply #44)

Tue May 3, 2016, 10:03 AM

53. Most Dems favor all those things you listed

Most also believe that the Democratic Party, over the repugs, Greens, Libertarians and all the unorganized independents, have the best chance at getting any of that done.

We also know that there are formidable, big-money forces aligned against getting any of that done, but the Dems are the strongest organization to go against the repugs and their clients so I side with them.

Good list, btw. Getting it done will not come in one fell swoop. The approach, IMO, is kind of like moving out of a large house filled with stuff accumulated over years. Looking at it as one huge task can be overwhelming and discouraging but if you tackle it one room at a time and just keep working, you'll eventually get it done.

Same with your list, go at one item, get it done, check it off the list and move on to the next one.

It's never gonna happen all at once, which is why many stick with a strong organization like the Dems, even with their many faults, and also why many don't believe in the Sanders hype that all those things on the list can be accomplished by just voting for him and his so-called "revolution".

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Response to pinebox (Reply #44)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:31 PM

63. me too and I'm with you 100%

I don't see one issue on that list that I disagree with. And those issues are why I'm an indy. The Democratic party, as it is now, does NOT stand for all of those things - unless they are politically expedient at the moment. I do not support candidates who take money from people who are against those issues either.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 07:25 AM

47. Independents are fashionistas.

 

They think it's cool to be unaffiliated, when in most cases -IMO- they're just lazy and can't be bothered to work within a party.
[hr][font color="blue"][center]"There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in."
Leonard Cohen, Anthem (1992)
[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 08:06 AM

49. Well. Do you want to offend an entire voting bloc?

Or have you just failed to learn the lesson of not wide-brush tarring an entire group of people?

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Response to VulgarPoet (Reply #49)

Tue May 3, 2016, 11:25 AM

55. Wasn't the point of the OP that independents aren't actually a bloc in any real sense?

Listed a number of reasons why people might call themselves independents, none of the particularly offensive.

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Response to nemo137 (Reply #55)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:05 PM

58. Exactly.

I listed several reasons (and have discussed other reasons throughout this thread) as to why folks identify as "independent." And then I'm accused of painting all independents with a broad brush by people who call them "a voting bloc."

How ironical.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 09:06 AM

50. Interestingly,

you seem to have left out the category every independent I've ever known fell into:

1. The two major parties do not represent them, and

2. They don't trust either major party, recognizing corruption and anti-democratic structure.

Nice, but failed try to portray independents as either stupid or extreme or both.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 09:52 AM

52. I don't think you can generalize that way. People are independent for all kinds of reasons.

I am a registered Democrat but my wife is independent who always votes Democratic. I can assure you that she "sees the link between economic and social issues" and how they are not linked without even the benefit of consulting a Venn diagram. What a ridiculous generalization to make.

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Response to yellowcanine (Reply #52)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:09 PM

60. I've done the exact opposite of "generalize" in both the OP and throughout this thread.

As I said above, it's rather humorous that I'm accused of "generalizing" by people who call independents "a voting bloc." When I, in the OP and throughout this thread, have discussed numerous different reasons why people self-identify as "independent."

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 11:21 AM

54. The many independents I know are thoughtful, discerning free thinkers

who are some of the most interesting, thought-provoking people I`ve ever met. They aren`t driven by party affiliation, they`re driven by issues they care deeply about. Most of them are between the ages of 45-78 and most are former Democrats....with a couple of Republican exceptions. All of them are open to new ideas and new ways of thinking about things. They include: a mason, a house cleaner, an antique shop owner, two female homesteaders, veterans, an occupational therapist, a hospice nurse, a mental health office worker, a musician/handyman, store clerk and more. Not one of them is a middle-of-the-roader on any important, current issue. They all vote, many do volunteer work and all them them care deeply about their country....very deeply.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:08 PM

59. I am unenrolled but never call myself an independent. I do have a bias for Dems as that is the only

political party I vote for.

If MA required that I be registered in a political party to vote in a primary then I would register as a Dem.

I'd guess most "independents" just don't want to be affiliated directly with a political party for a variety of reasons, only 10% do not vote along consistent partisan lines.

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Response to seaglass (Reply #59)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:11 PM

61. Agreed.

In the OP and throughout this thread, I've discussed "a variety of reasons." Yet I get accused of "generalizing" by those who consider independents to be "a voting bloc." I get a kick out of that.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #61)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:18 PM

62. No they are not a voting bloc. Trying to create a political party around independents would be

even harder than corralling Dems.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:33 PM

64. "because they think it gives the impression that they are unbiased, critical thinkers"

how condescending.

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Response to dana_b (Reply #64)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:39 PM

65. Do you really not think that's true for *some* who self-identify as "independent?"

Because that's all I'm saying.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #65)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:45 PM

66. your entire post is insulting to indys n/t

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Response to dana_b (Reply #66)

Tue May 3, 2016, 01:49 PM

67. You didn't answer my question.

You seem to be suggesting that "indys" are all one in the same, but there are a variety of reasons why people self-identify as "independent." Nearly half of Tea Party members self-identify as "independent." Surely you don't think they're the same as every other person who self-identifies as "independent."

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #67)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:06 PM

68. I never suggested any such thing

I said that your post was condescending and insulting. That's it.

And I have no intentions of answering your question.

Bye.

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Response to dana_b (Reply #68)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:12 PM

70. If I give a variety of reasons why people self-identify as "independent"...

...and you respond by saying I'm insulting "indys," you are - whether you acknowledge it or not - suggesting that "indys" form a homogenous bloc of voters.

You make an accusation. I then ask, "Do you not think *some* self-identify as independent because it gives the impression that they are unbiased?" Your refusal to answer that straightforward question negates your accusation.

Surveys have made it clear that *many* who self-identify as "independent" are actually party loyalists. That's the reality.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:08 PM

69. Or we're to the left of both major parties. eom

n/t

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Response to TransitJohn (Reply #69)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:15 PM

72. There is no "we," though.

Tea Party members who self-identify as "independent" are certainly not "to the left of both major parties." Nor would I ever accuse them of being critical/free thinkers.

There are a variety of reasons why people self-identify as "independent." I made that clear in the OP and throughout this thread, which is why it's so funny that *I* get accused of "generalizing."

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #72)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:16 PM

73. So I'm not allowed to include myself in a group I self identify with?

Okay, as long as you can dictate the particulars of the discussion, you always win! I like it. Brilliant!

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Response to TransitJohn (Reply #73)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:19 PM

76. Of course you can.

What I'm saying (and it should be clear by now) is that some who self-identify as "independent" are radically different from (and opposed to) others who self-identify as "independent."

Millions will vote for the Democratic candidate. Millions will vote for the Republican candidate. Millions will vote for someone else or not vote at all.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:13 PM

71. You exposed your limited thought process. Oops!

 

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Response to pdsimdars (Reply #71)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:17 PM

74. By pointing out that there are a variety of reasons why people self-identify as "independent?"

Not only in the OP but throughout this thread. I'm not the one setting limits. Those who seem to think independents constitute "a voting bloc" are the ones placing boundaries.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:18 PM

75. They are a group of voters the majority of whom will not vote for Clinton...

 

If you believe the polls.

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Response to leeroysphitz (Reply #75)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:22 PM

77. Just as a majority didn't vote for Obama in 2012.

Obama lost the "independent" vote in nearly every swing state and lost it by double digits in the crucial state of Ohio. Yet he won Ohio and won re-election in a landslide.

Given how many radical right wingers self-identify as "independent," this is hardly surprising.

Millions of independents will vote for Clinton. Millions will vote for the Republican candidate. Millions won't vote for either. That's just the way it is.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:24 PM

78. Are party loyalists unbiased? Are they critical thinkers when they vote for a label?

 

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Response to Tierra_y_Libertad (Reply #78)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:34 PM

80. It's hard to say.

Surveys show that many who self-identify as "independent" are actually party loyalists.

Is someone who always (or almost always) votes for Democrats someone who is thinking critically about issues? Or is that person only voting that way because of a label or because that's how they were raised to vote?

Is someone who always (or almost always) votes Green or Libertarian someone who thinks critically about issues?

Is someone who votes for candidates from all different political parties someone who thinks critically about issues?

Hard to say precisely, but I think it's fair to assume there are some in each of the above categories for whom the answer is "yes" and some for whom the answer is "no."

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #80)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:55 PM

84. There are no facts, only interpretations. Friedrich Nietzsche

 

Generalizations about any group are always, at best, wobbly, and extremely subjective.

People vote for all kinds of reasons. Loyalty, caprice, coin toss, philosophical musings, idealism, hairstyle, ignorance, mood, individual interests, insanity, etc. etc, etc.

It always comes down to individual choice.

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Response to Tierra_y_Libertad (Reply #84)

Tue May 3, 2016, 02:59 PM

85. Agreed.

As I've made clear in the OP and throughout this thread, there are a variety of reasons as to why people self-identify as "independent." And some independents are vehemently opposed to other independents. Independents do not constitute a united bloc of voters.

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Response to Garrett78 (Original post)

Tue May 3, 2016, 03:01 PM

86. Does it matter? They represent 39% of the voting public, and Socialism appeals to them.

 

I'm beyond frustrated at the Clinton supporter approach to the question; independents are icky. They're probably old white men who, unlike Alice Walton, dilute the purity of our cause when they vote for us.

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Response to lumberjack_jeff (Reply #86)

Tue May 3, 2016, 03:08 PM

87. Socialism appeals to *some* of them.

Some who self-identify as independent are radically opposed to others who self-identify as independent.

Many are, in actuality, party loyalists. Numerous surveys back that up.

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Response to Garrett78 (Reply #87)

Tue May 3, 2016, 03:09 PM

88. Enough do that it's vitally important to the DNC and the Clinton campaign to keep them out. n/t

 

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