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Politics: We Look At Movement To The Middle

Evening Edition

Scott Dickey, CEO of Competitor Group, Inc., and a member of Movement to the Middle, and Ron King, SDSU political science professor, talk to KPBS about the new movement.

Aired 4/30/12 on KPBS Midday Edition.


Scott Dickey - CEO, Competitor Group Inc., member of Movement to the Middle

Ron King, SDSU Political Science Professor


More than 1,000 people have signed a declaration to put aside political party loyalty with the new group Movement to the Middle, according to one of the group's organizers.

Movement to the Middle was started last week when a group of San Diego business leaders denounced their party affiliations and reregistered as independents. They were following the lead of state Assemblyman and mayoral candidate Nathan Fletcher, who quit the Republican Party earlier this month.

Scott Dickey, CEO of Competitor Group, Inc., was one of those business leaders. He told KPBS he's been a "life long Republican," but was inspired by Fletcher's "bold move."

Dickey said he's known Fletcher for more than 10 years and they have talked repeatedly over that time about the "dysfunctional nature of a two-party system" and how Democrats and Republicans seem to be moving "further and further to the fringe."

But Ron King, a San Diego State University political science professor, said Fletcher's move also says something about the nature of political strategy.

"For more than 50 years, political scientists have said that the politician who moves to the middle, who stands for the median voter, has a much greater chance of winning an election than a politician who doesn't stand for the median voter," King said.

King also said that although voters may register as independents, they usually show their party alliances through their political positions. By doing surveys, King said he can sort independents into Democrats and Republicans with 95 percent probability.

But Dickey said that Movement to the Middle is growing. In addition to the thousand voters who have signed its declaration, he said more than 60 business leaders how now also climbed on board.

"We know we've struck a chord," he said. "The alienated majority is going to awaken in this election, and we're going to bring more people to the polls in this primary, and we're going to see the results on June 6."

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Avatar for user 'keithericson'

keithericson | April 30, 2012 at 12:28 p.m. ― 4 years, 11 months ago

Move to the middle? Why not join the Libertarian Party - we are already there.

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Avatar for user 'Studying_Nomad'

Studying_Nomad | April 30, 2012 at 12:44 p.m. ― 4 years, 11 months ago

Great convo!

Libertarian = middle? Explain.

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Avatar for user 'Roberto Rolando Salinas'

Roberto Rolando Salinas | April 30, 2012 at 3:24 p.m. ― 4 years, 11 months ago

The only thing in the middle of the road are yellow stripes and dead Armadillos. The old, tired and failed policies of the Republican party, locally and nationally, like declaring war on women, minorities, unions, workers, the elderly, and children, will come back to haunt them. Fletcher might want to disown himself from the Grand Ole Party, but he can't disown his voting record, anti-labor, anti-union, anti-consumer, paid for the Corporate Oligarchy. The same good ole boy club that backs DeMaio, and Dumanis, The same good ole boy club that would love to privatize city and county government and services, and give the contracts to their paymasters. Like the Padres downtown, and the Chargers eagerly waiting in the wings. The Republican's got us into this pension mess by giving tax dollars to the Republican convention under Susan Golding. Now they ask us to trust them once again and that this time they'll get it right. Can't trust the Republicans with taxpayer money, they love socialism for the rich, and rugged individualism for the rest of us. A party of greedy corporate cronyism that has decayed government at all levels and now jeopardizes our children's future.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | April 30, 2012 at 6:32 p.m. ― 4 years, 11 months ago

The middle these days does *not* lie directly in between Democrats and Republicns.

It looks like this:

**Dems-----The Middle---------------------------------------------------Repugs**

As a liberal, I can say firmly that the Democratic Party today is not liberal.

It's just more moderate than the radical right that have hijacked the republican party, and it's moved the goal posts of debate in our country to match the scale I created above.

The tea party have infiltrated the mainstream Republican Party. These are extremists who want to quite literally dismantle government and take away such basics as public education and social security.

The tea party radicals would be the equivalent on the other end of the spectrum with flower-clad hippies advocating everyone live in communes, and as we all know that's certainly not anything like today's mainstream democratic party.

In fact, today's Democratic Party is pretty moderate - capitalists who favor certain government safety nets. That is neither "hippie like" nor "socialism" but rather pretty middle of the road when one looks at global and historical American politics.

The republican party is far more radically conservative than the democratic party is liberal. **FAR** more.

Even the rhetoric has been reinvented. What was once basic government services are now "evil socialism".

It's become acceptable for prominent in-office republican leaders to publicly call government services socialism. Again, you don't see this level of extremism on the other side. You don't see elected democrats publicly declaring republicans fascists.

What I am saying is correct, and we saw it in the mayoral debate hosted on KPBS.

As a "moderate", Mr. Fletcher was far more aligned with Filner than with DeMaio. Most of his squabbles were with the radically right-wing DeMaio.

So, as I see it, becoming a "moderate independent" simply rescued Fletcher from the bowels of the extremist republican party and simply moved him to just slightly right of Filner and the Democrats.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | April 30, 2012 at 10:03 p.m. ― 4 years, 11 months ago

Roberto, you nailed it with this comment: *"The same good ole boy club that would love to privatize city and county government and services, and give the contracts to their paymasters. "*

In fact, that's how Filthy DeMaio made his personal fortune. He used to be one of those very same on-the-take paymasters.

Dirty Carl's history is a classic scenario of government corruption where he did this:

(1) Procured his political ties after college by aligning himself with none other than New Gingrich among others who would set him up nicely with lucrative ways to feed off of tax money through the "private sector" which profits from government contracts

(2) After building a network of political allies, DeMaio then went into many years of running "private" businesses that relied on government contracts awarded to him by the political allies he made. Dirty Carl profited handsomely from this, and became a millionaire.

(3) Dirty DeMaio, now fat, rich, and happy from his lucrative government contract skimming, goes into politics as an elected official. Here, he returns all the favors to those cronies in the "good 'ol Boy network", and provides the next crop of scammers who will bennefit from luvrative government outsourng their own cash-cow government contracts to feed on.

It's fascinating how scum like Creepy Carl spend a lifetime profiting off of tax payers, building huge personal wealth from government money, but then turn around and say social services should be trimmed and the poor just want "handouts".

The hypocrisy is astounding, and the large amount of people who seem to either not understand these facts or simply not care is depressing.

A Mayor DeMaio would be just as bad - even worse - than Mayor cum Felon cum rabid right wing propaganda-peddler Roger Hedgecock.

Dirty Carl's repertoire of alliances reads like a who's who of America's most morally bankrupt men from Newt Gingrich to Papa Manchester.

It's no secret that Dirty Carl's own political career means more to this slime-bucket than anything else. I mean he is an openly gay man who has made alliances with San Diego's most notorious homophobes just to get ahead politically.

This says a lot about someone's character - aligning with someone who thinks you are disguising and not entitled to equal rights just to get ahead politically.

Maybe a more accurate name that I should be using instead of 'Dirty Carl' is **DANGEROUS DEMAIO** because this man is profoundly dangerous to our city.

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