If you’re like me, you’re thoroughly sick of both major American political parties, and ready for a change. Is it a pipe dream? No. American political parties have typically gone through a major realignment every 40 years since the country was founded. We’re due for one, and the time is ripe.
Of course, we might disagree on what new party we’re looking for. My dream party would make the environment, climate change and conservation a top priority, be pro-life, pro-healthcare, pro-alternative energy, pro-preventative-birth-control, anti-death penalty, anti-war, anti-gun, pro-diversity, pro-immigrant, pro-education, pro-social-service programs, pro-marijuana-legalization, libertarian on issues of gender and sexuality, but make broad allowances for people to follow their religious convictions except in cases where that directly imposed on others’ rights. Your dream party might well be quite different.
Nevertheless I think we should all –with the exception of the so-called “deplorables,” meaning white nationalists –pursue a common strategy over the next 6 years.
2018 & 2020 – Run as a Democrat, for every office, at every level, and in every location. If you are not running, go all out to support the Democrats that run.
Why? It is important for the moral future of the country that the current Republican party be publicly and decisively repudiated for its willingness to embrace the lowest common denominator in pursuit of personal financial advantage and raw political power. In the immediate future, the Democratic party is the best vehicle for this. It is also the best avenue towards the impeachment of Donald Trump, which needs to take place for the same reason.
HOWEVER, don’t be afraid to buck the party orthodoxy while doing so. If your district is safe Democratic, run in the primary on the incumbent’s right or left. If you are running in a solid Republican district, make up your own party principles and run on those, whether or not they match the larger party’s platform.
Why? This may influence policy changes for the larger party. If not, it is still an opportunity to establish your “brand” and gauge support for your platform. At the same time, you’ll be learning valuable, hands-on experience on how to run a campaign, and building political networks.
2022 This is the year to break out on your own or to shift your support to a third party. Assuming the Democrats have won the presidency, there will be an inevitable backlash. This channels it away from the Republicans, and towards the creation of viable alternatives. Plus, with the experience you’ve gained in 2018 and 2020, you’ll be ready.