I agree with David Frum’s video here but I would put it differently. American politics works best at least in the past and perhaps now we would be better off with 4 party system instead of a two-party system, but back in the day American politics was at it’s best when you had two strong political parties.
A Center-Left Democratic Party that believed in both private enterprise and even property rights, with a commonsense regulatory state and a safety net for people who truly needed it. As well as civil liberties, personal autonomy, personal freedom, civil and equal rights.
And a Center-Right Republican Party was a strong fiscally conservative party that believed in fiscal responsibility, as well as a private market that was pretty much unfettered other than some environmental and safety regulations. But that also believed in a level of personal autonomy and even personal freedom.
The Center-Left Democrats would lean on the side of personal freedom and civil liberties. While pushing for the safety net. The Center-Right Republicans would push for economic freedom, as well as a conservative culture, but wouldn’t try to force that way of live on every American through government force.
Both party’s were actually cold warriors and anti-Communists. Every American President that we had during the Cold War was an anti-Communist. American voters could count on Democrats to protect their civil liberties and personal freedom. American voters could count on Republicans to protect their economic freedom and property rights.
The old American political way of doing things wasn’t a marriage made in Heaven or even an effective partnership. But two opposite sides there to protect what Americans truly wanted and needed. The right to be left alone and be able to live their own lives. Without big government trying to steal their wallets or bank accounts. Or breaking into our private homes because they don’t like what we’re doing there or who consenting adults were sleeping with.
That has all been blown up not just since Donald Trump moved into the White House, but going back to when George W. Bush moved into the White House. Not because of President Bush himself who was actually fairly moderate and Center-Right as President when it came to the Cultural War issues. As well as economic issues like education and immigration. But the parties have changed drastically. They’ve both become big government parties but in different forms.
In 2016 a Democratic Socialist almost won the Democratic nomination for President. The Democratic Party hasn’t had a major Far-Left presidential candidate since Senator George McGovern won the Democratic nomination in 1972. But Senator Bernie Sanders came close. In 2016 the Republican Party not only had a major right-wing Far-Right Nationalist with authoritarian leanings, but Donald Trump is currently President of the United States. By beating a Center-Left pragmatic Progressive Democrat in Hillary Clinton.
What I’m saying here isn’t so much what David Frum is arguing about the Republican Party should still matter and be saved by the Christian-Nationalists in the party. But really about how much the two major political parties have changed and that they no longer represent the mainstream so much as their fringes in the party who always threaten to either challenge their leadership and even leave the party, when a Democrat or Republican doesn’t give them exactly what they want. Leaving 40% of the electorate saying that they’re not either a Democrat or Republican, because neither party represents what they really want and believe in.
Americans don’t like big government, period by in large. Either trying to manage our economic affairs for us and even try to run our businesses. Or in our personal lives trying to manage how we live and what we do in our privacy. Which is why I believe if there is a time when both major parties could become not just weak, but perhaps irrelevant and maybe we do see two new major parties emerge with one being the old Center-Right Republican Party leaving the Republicans with just the Nationalists and Christian-Right. And leaving the Democrats with just the Socialists, both Democratic but thanks to ANTIFA Communist, that time is now. Unless the establishment’s and leadership’s of both party’s reclaim their party’s and start to take on their fringes. Even if they risk losing their positions in their party.