Rich Galen

The Purity of the Party is improved, but at what cost - to the Republican Party and to the Country as a whole? If this keeps up the GOP will not be the minority party, but a minor party.

Perhaps it is time to form a real, no kidding around, third party. Third parties in the U.S. have been a cult of an individual -from Teddy Roosevelt to Ross Perot to Ralph Nader. When the individual leaves the scene the party withers and dies.

A real third party would allow the Democrats to be the Liberals; the Republicans to be the Conservatives; and the Moderates - the MODs - to be everyone who does not believe that ideological perfection - on the left or right - is a prerequisite to holding public office.

There is nothing in the U.S. Constitution which speaks to a two-party system. As long as we are all about "Change" maybe we should add a third choice so that Republicans and Democrats - whoever is in control at any given time - would have to negotiate with the MODs who might well hold the balance of power.

In fact, I am surprised that no one has ever challenged the use of public funds to run elections so the Democrats and Republicans can choose their nominees. Why should the tax dollars of independents, who very often cannot vote in party primaries, be used for this most partisan of activities?

Democrats and Republicans want to hold a primary? They can pay for it.

An issues and values-based MOD party with, say, 45 seats in the House and ten seast in the Senate might be just the thing America needs to stop the partisan squabbling between Republicans and Democrats.

Then Arlen Specter could switch back and forth all he wanted and no one would care.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at