Originally Posted by pondering_it_all
That leaves the unwashed middle, call them independents, perhaps moderates, certainly the non-affiliated. Those basically peeved at both parties and how both parties govern for only their base and not America as a whole.

I think you are projecting your own studied independence on The Independents. I bet most of them have little awareness of politics, and just vote for celebrities or the snappiest dresser. Those who think a lot about political positions and lament partisanship are a very small minority. Lots more sports fans who would rather watch ESPN than PBS. They are easily manipulated by demagogues like Trump with "simple-but-wrong" catch-phrases. Trump had to practically destroy our democracy to lose their support. If he had been just a bit less blatant, he would have won in 2020.
I think you're right. Independents, the non-affiliate don't pay much attention to politics until an election nears. They also tend to vote, presidential wise for the more charismatic candidate. although the last two elections, none were charismatic. Independents went twice for Obama, he had charisma up the ying yang. They also went twice for G.W. Bush, very close on both counts. Not that G.W. was charismatic, he was more of a down home boy vs. two statues in Gore and Kerry. Now Bill Clinton was one charismatic candidate, independents voted for him twice over G.H.W. and a dour Dole.

Reagan, another very charismatic candidate who swamped both Carter and Mondale among independents. But independent have a habit of voting one way in presidential elections, then voting for the opposite party's congressional candidates in the next which I outlined before as for the percentages.

Elections to them are what I call beauty contests or popularity contests. Yet, they decide elections, at least on the national level. Neither party's base is large enough to do it on their own.

Actually, I find Democrats and Republican dull and boring. I know how'll they will vote. Independents, now there's a challenge. Little awareness is absolutely correct. Watchers of ESPN, their favorite TV shows, etc. yep. Most may not even watch the news, maybe a minute here or there. They don't know what C-Span is, Yet they do decide elections.

I totally agree on how you portrayed them. Yet it seems the Democrats are trying to get more and more of these non-attentive people to vote. Interesting.

It's high past time that we start electing Americans to congress and the presidency who put America first instead of their political party. For way too long we have been electing Republicans and Democrats who happen to be Americans instead of Americans who happen to be Republicans and Democrats.