Robert Bennett: Washington doesn't need a third party

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  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 23, 2013 3:21 p.m.

    Glenn Beck does. Think of the entertainment revenue.

  • sickoftalking Encino, CA
    Oct. 21, 2013 7:57 p.m.

    "The only successful third party movement in our history, the Republican Party..."

    I'm not sure how you're rating a party's success, but throughout the 19th century, a Congressional session didn't pass without some third party representation.

    In the 1830s, the Anti-Masons had as much as 25 seats, and the Nullifiers as much as 9. In the 1850s, before the Civil War, the American Party (Know-Nothings) had 52 seats and the Anti-Nebraska Party had 22 seats. During the Civil War, in the 1860s, the Unionist Party had as much as 26 seats. And of course, in the 1890s, the Populist Party had as much as 22 seats. In the early 20th century, the Progressive Party had 9 seats. Of course, during all this time smaller third party movements also found representation, too: the Silver Party, Readjuster Party, and so on. Today, at most you have one or two registered Independent in Congress, and no third party representation at all. This is new.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Oct. 21, 2013 6:43 p.m.


    Exactly right. The right has deluded themselves into thinking that the majority of the US population is far right of center.

    They believe that the term "conservative" means far far to the right.

    It has never been that way.

    Reagan was certainly right of center, but only moderately. GWBush was moderate and although he governed to the left of Reagan he still got the blind support of the right. Only in hindsight, when the facts stared them square in the face, did they turn on him but only slightly.

    Most president (all I can think of) have been either moderately left or right of center. And that includes Obama and Clinton.

    I consider myself a fiscal conservative. But not the brand that is espoused by the Tea Party and Cruz. I dont want to shut down the government. Or the EPA or the FDA. I want these things fixed. I believe that entitlements need to be reigned in. But not all in one year while cutting taxes for the rich.

    I would love to see $5 in spending cuts for ever $1 in tax increases. Not the GOP.

    Logic and reason are gone.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Oct. 21, 2013 5:20 p.m.

    From Patriot......"The old guard (McCain, Hatch, etc...) are NOT representing conservatives in their states which is why we got rid of Bennett and elected Lee."

    And that is why the rest of us don't want anything to do with the "New" republican party. The old party was about building coalitions to get things done. This new brand of entitled conservative has been pampered that they think anything but what they want, when they want it, how they want it... is unacceptable.

    This nation is about a plurality of people.... always has been.... but this new group thinks disrespecting others is a form of diplomacy. Had we followed their brand of poetics, instead of winning over the Chinese to a hybrid version of communism/socialism/capitalism, they would have demanded all or nothing at we would be at war with China.

    I have absolutely no need for any brand of politics that declares and demands party purity. The world has seen this before... and it has ended poorly.

  • erwad whoville, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 4:25 p.m.

    Mr. Bennett,

    While although I never voted for you and wouldn't in the future as a Dem - I miss your pragmatism and wisdom especially among the current Tea Party Utah delegation which continues to bring shame to our state and to Mormon culture in my opinion. Sadly the red meat culture nourished in certain circles in state and culture have produced extremists ideologues that are dangerous and foolish.

  • BYR West Bountiful, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 4:13 p.m.

    The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty. George Washington Farewell Address.
    We need three parties.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Oct. 21, 2013 2:33 p.m.

    "Splitting the Republican vote would be a Democrat's dream."

    Yes it would. But would it be good for America? I don't think so.

    I don't want complete Democratic control.
    Nor do I want a House, Senate and President under Republican control.

  • Iron Rod Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 2:33 p.m.

    Re Patriot
    Cedar Hills. Utah

    I would like to see the Deseret News or Salt Lake Tribune do a current survey on if actually the people from Utah County support Mike Lees efforts.

    It would be interesting to see the results.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 2:25 p.m.

    If our founding fathers had acted like our modern day politicians and were more interested in their own self interest and in "getting along", we would probably still be subject to the British monarchy.

    We need leaders who will stand up for what is right even if it costs them politically.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Oct. 21, 2013 12:34 p.m.

    As a Demo, I would be delighted to see Glenn Beck succeed in his efforts to launch a third party. The result would be a USA dominated once again by intelligent progressives who actually believe in science and economic fairness.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 12:01 p.m.

    A third party? Well the real solution would be a united GOP but that isn't going to happen - not now and not ever. The old guard (McCain, Hatch, etc...) are NOT representing conservatives in their states which is why we got rid of Bennett and elected Lee. Mike IS representing the people in his district especially in Utah Valley. McCain is essentially a big government progressive and that just isn't representative of the people who won the 2010 mid terms. I suspect democrat's will win the presidency for the foreseeable future but an even bigger prize will be winning back the senate and keeping the house and that CAN happen as it did in 2010 and it won't be by fence sitting progressives - it will be by conservatives and independents who are SICK of Socialism and how it robs them of their rights as well as their pocket book. Political parties I think will being to disappear as people unite against Obamacare because the bottom line is the American Dream which is fading fast.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 11:52 a.m.

    The largest party in America right now could be called the Unaffiliated Party. Why don't we just make it official. Its platform could be, simply, we will go to Washington pass sensible legislation, work toward balancing the budget by reining in a few out-of-control expenses, closing loopholes, and increasing taxes to pre-Reagan levels, impose term limits on ourselves, and refuse to take money from large corporations or PACs or anyone who wants to buy our votes.

  • The Solution Dayton, OH
    Oct. 21, 2013 11:38 a.m.

    @milner - well said
    @Semi-Strong - great comment
    @Hutterite - yep
    @ronk-sandy - absolutely right

    We don't need another party per se, we need an independent who will represent the people. Long past are the days when people of office were "public servants." Now they are celebrities soiled in corruption and partisan politics.

    Currently, it is just a game: 2 points Democrats vs. 1 point Republicans. Those who started with great vision, clean conscience, and wanted to help are quickly overcome by the system and party that sponsored them.

    By the way Mr. Bennett, Abraham LIncoln and Ronald Reagan were actually two of the most rigid presidents we know. It was a good thing in their situations and what they stood for.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Oct. 21, 2013 11:33 a.m.

    I think splitting the Republican party would be ideal.... making room for those like myself who left the party to come back. But until that happens, I will not be party of Limbaugh/Tea Party tail wagging the dog party. I could no more associate with those groups as I could with communist nor white supremacist. Any party that has "purity" as part of its mantra... doesn't represent me.

  • ronk-sandy SANDY, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 9:49 a.m.

    I agree with Sen Bennett on the Third Party idea. It wouldn't really solve anything at this point except splinter the conservatives and allow the likes of Pelosi, Reid and Obama to dominate even more. What we really need is term-limits on all these knuckle heads so we can get back to government of the people, by the people and for the people. With over 300 million people in this country, surely, we have enough talented and skilled people to serve in congress. Also, if we have put term-limits on the president, we need to do the same on the legislative branch of government. Currently there is too much special interest money for both liberals and conservatives floating around.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 9:38 a.m.

    Why not a third, or fourth party? Why not a Green party, a Liberal Democrat party, and the Tea party, too? How well does democracy function if we only have 2 choices?

  • Semi-Strong Louisville, KY
    Oct. 21, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    George Washington said it best about parties - he was as a prophet:

    They serve to organize faction, to give it an artificial and extraordinary force; to put, in the place of the delegated will of the nation the will of a party, often a small but artful and enterprising minority of the community; and, according to the alternate triumphs of different parties, to make the public administration the mirror of the ill-concerted and incongruous projects of faction, rather than the organ of consistent and wholesome plans digested by common counsels and modified by mutual interests.

    However combinations or associations of the above description may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely, in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 8:55 a.m.

    Re: "Washington doesn't need a third party"

    Hear, hear!

    What Washington really needs is a SECOND party.

    There simply is no place on the current political landscape for conservative constitutionalists, which comprise a clear majority of Americans.

    Leadership of the parties has merged. "Leaders" no longer care for the will of constituents or the good of the country. With them, it has come down to a single issue -- re-election.

    Nothing more. No heart. No soul. No integrity. No guiding philosophy.

    This combined Democrat/Republican Party concerns itself strictly with "packaging." It overreaches so hard to buy off every perceived voting constituency, it no longer represents ANY of us.

    One or the other name will probably survive, but the lineage, honors, and traditions of both parties died years ago, and will shortly be consigned to the ash heap of history, along with the Whig, Bull-Moose, and Know-Nothing parties.

  • milner Centerfield Sanpete, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 8:39 a.m.

    I think this country would be better off if we didn`t have political parties! That way the person holding a political office could vote for what he thinks is right instead of going along party lines!

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 7:35 a.m.

    you forgot those who go along to get along. No thanks!

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 7:30 a.m.

    Glen Beck is advocating it on his network. when conservatives attack other conservatives like liberals the third party is inevitable. Senator Lee and Cruz of President of Texas and Utah. (Succession would be the only way)

  • The Skeptical Chymist SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Oct. 21, 2013 7:22 a.m.

    Personally, I would love to see the Republican party splinter into two parties: the Tea Party and the mainline Republicans. Splitting the Republican vote would be a Democrat's dream.

  • Mainly Me Werribee, 00
    Oct. 21, 2013 6:46 a.m.

    What needs to happen is both parties need to be scrapped. Neither one truly represent the people. It's nothing more than cronyism and the old boy network.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Oct. 21, 2013 6:23 a.m.

    What we need, Mr Bennett is politicians who put America over party. Who put Americans before Corporations and unions. Who put voters ahead of $dollars$.

    What makes anyone think that a 3rd party would not quickly be corrupted by the money also?

    If our politicians were not swayed by the massive amounts of MONEY heaped on them, it would not matter much if we elected R or D.

    Lobbyists now spend over $3 Billion dollars per year. (over 5.5 million per congressman)
    The 2012 presidential campaigns spent over $2 Billion Dollars (plus undisclosed pac money)

    Anyone who can fog a mirror knows this is not good for our country.