David Frum: GOP needs to dump tea party

David Frum: GOP needs to dump tea party

[Ed. note: Another country heard from]

“Do the Republican and Democratic parties do an adequate job of representing the American people, or do they do such a poor job that a third major party is required?”

A record 60% of Americans now yearn for a third major party, according to Gallup. Independents, unsurprisingly, are most likely to favor a third party, but a majority of self-described Republicans say yes, too. But what do they mean by that “yes”?

Obviously, they mean many different things. Some yearn for a third party representing the Michael Bloomberg center: fiscally conservative and socially liberal like the New York City mayor.

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But here’s a caution about third parties in American history: They are much more likely to arise on the fringes of the political system, not the center. America has seen third-party efforts by socialists and segregationists; by right-to-lifers and libertarians.

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