Letter: We need a centrist candidate


I’d like to float the idea of purposefully voting for a moderate presidential candidate in the next election.

Our island, like so many communities in America today, is politically divided. It’s divided about as much as I can possibly take, and I do not see things changing anytime soon the way it’s going.

By default, we need a centrist candidate. Compromise and civil conduct are broken. I do not want to bounce back and forth each four-year election cycle from one extreme position to the other. We’re stalling out over the course of eight years as one extreme undoes what the other extreme did before it.

The reality is, we do not have a moderate choice on the Republican side in this election; neither do we have uniformly moderate choices among Democrats.

As an independent voter, I find that I am comfortable with, for example, Joe Biden and his unconventional idea of picking a Republican running mate.

I’d like to comment on a pro-Trump letter published in the Whidbey News-Times on Jan. 2. The letter calls out folks who suffer from, “Trump derangement syndrome.” In his letter, Ed Hickey backs solid American values, but his criticism of the other extreme is, well … extreme.

It’s remarkable how similar the two ends of the political spectrum sound when characterizing the other end of the spectrum.

Each side says the other side is uninformed, a victim of the media, and a threat to the Constitution and Bill of Rights. It’s an absolute impasse; reasonable people are looking at essentially the same information and seeing radically different things.

I suggest that we vote for someone who can start a healing process for our country. It needs to begin at the top, our highest office. We can also model best practices while politicking at home. I’d like to recommend two organizations for their conduct and approach: Civility First and the bipartisan Citizens Climate Lobby.

Let’s do politics differently in 2020. Consider moderate candidates, take a civil path, and attempt bipartisan agreement.

Isn’t this a better way to run a democracy, one with checks and balances that work?

Lee B. James


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