The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

October 15, 2013

Middle America is not aligned with the polarized politics of Washington, D.C.

Enid News and Eagle

— Washington is polarized, but what about the rest of the United States?

A new Esquire-NBC News poll insists America isn’t necessarily a nation divided, despite the shutdown situation.

The survey claims a 51 percent majority of Americans belong in the political center.

We can hear the partisans howling: “If you’re not right, you’re wrong.” “Non-progressives are left behind.”

Before you stop reading and turn to Fox News or MSNBC, consider this: The bipartisan “New American Center” survey involved lead pollsters for both Romney and Obama.

The compartmental breakdowns of ideological segments are interesting, even though the left and right only get two categories while the middle hogs four.

Conservative camps include “The Righteous Right” and “The Talk Radio Heads,” while liberal segments include “The Bleeding Hearts” and “The Gospel Left.”

What about America’s midsection? These four categories are “Minivan Moderates,” “The MBA Middle,” “The Pick-up Populists” and “The #WhateverMan.”

Take the survey

The “New American Center” believes the following, according to the survey:

• 76 percent believe the U.S. shouldn’t be the world’s policeman.

• 58 percent are pessimistic about U.S. politics.

• More than 44 percent don’t believe their ideas are represented by Republicans or Democrats.

• They don’t believe they are in the center, either, with 25 percent identifying themselves conservative and 20 percent liberal.

That’s not surprising, as many will debate the political pigeonholing. In this day and age, some centrists don’t agree with the moderates.

“Centrists are not moderate,” The Centrist Party claims on its website, “they are strong, sensible people that care about fairness, justice, value and responsibility. To protect these values, we have created ‘The Centrist Party.’”