I’ll take this opportunity to bump my own RedHot off the front page. But in staying with the same spirit of that earlier article – this one again addresses the issue of the supposed need of the GOP to move to the middle. But why? IS there a middle? James Gimpel seems to think not. He doesn’t mince any words:
The research suggests that those who at various times occupy this center, often described as moderates or independents, are not very knowledgeable about or interested in politics. They do not follow campaign coverage closely, are inconsistent in their policy views, and are often not able to identify what positions are liberal or conservative.
What characterizes the centrist voter is not some peculiar set of policy positions, but rather ignorance of policy issues in general, coupled with vague impressions of the “goodness” or “badness” of the times. So-called centrist or moderate voters can’t even be counted on to vote.
His conclusion backs my points I’ve made in prior posts and diaries: …But the path to victory is to find a candidate who will pull the center in their direction, not to modify policy stances in hopes of making inattentive and ambivalent voters pay heed.