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EDITORIAL: Is nation ready to roll Forward?

| September 16, 2022 1:00 AM

The nation’s primary election season ended this week, so the Nov. 8 general election finally is next on the calendar.

If you’ve watched the metamorphosis of modern politics evolve into something that feels like spiders creeping up your back, maybe the latest call for a third party will appeal.

The Forward Party has been christened and launched, not with any real hope of broad immediate impact but with an eye toward 2024 and beyond. Former N.J. Gov. Christine Todd Whitman, a Republican, and Andrew Yang, a former Democratic presidential candidate, are the principal founders of the Forward Party.

“Not left. Not right. Forward,” the party’s website states unambiguously.

“Americans can fix ANY problem, as long as we don’t let the angry extremes hold us back. We also don’t want Washington insiders telling us what to think. We want to think for ourselves and get things done. Sadly, the rigid, top-down, one-size-fits-all platforms of the outdated political parties are drifting toward the fringes, making solutions impossible. That is why Forward is approaching a ‘platform’ differently. We stand for doing, not dividing. That means rejecting the far Left and far Right and pursuing common ground.”

Since Forward’s birth in late July, think tanks, pundits and political scientists have kept their crystal balls busy, many predicting the new party has as much chance of gaining serious traction as a bald tire in a North Idaho blizzard.

Sure, the surveys suggest, there are pockets of positivity. According to an article by Brookings, https://brook.gs/3Lc7Q5M, national discontent with both major parties has more than quadrupled since 1994. But the consternation dwells more in the hearts of Democrats and Independents than in Republicans, the article’s research suggests.

Further, younger Americans tend to be less satisfied with the current two-party power punch than do older Americans, but the youngsters don’t show up at the polls like their seniors.

So what are the chances that Forward candidates will be representing you anytime soon in the Idaho Legislature, Congress or the White House? History suggests it’s a steep hill to climb — maybe insurmountable for now — but the journey will be fascinating nonetheless.

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