Back in October one of our local bloggers, From A Simple Mind, suggested we form a new political party where voters would pick and choose from a slate of candidates meeting our nation's criteria regardless of party affiliation. She named her creation the "Cafeteria Party".
It goes to show the frustrations of local bloggers with the political process runs deep. And that great minds think alike.
A few weeks ago Chris Matthews hosted actor Sam Waterson of "Law and Order" fame. He is the celebrity spokesman for the fledgling Unity '08 movement. I was intrigued. It seems this is to be a one time shot to break the stalemate in two party politics. To be done all on line, you can sign up to become a delegate, help write the platform and ultimately select the party's Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates. One Republican, one Democrat. The order doesn't matter. The candidates just have to agree to the party platform.
Friday, David Broder of the Washington Post, went on to explain that the movement was launched by Hamilton Jordan and Jerry Rafshoon of the Carter administration, former Independent Governor of Maine Angus King and Republican consultant Douglas Bailey.
To date they say some 35,000 people signed up. Critics suppose there are too many hoops to jump through for the project to be viable but those issues are being addressed. I'm not so sure this idea won't catch on. Especially since the 800 pound gorillas are already consuming everyone in sight.
I see this as tremendous potential for candidates who are extremely well qualified but will be out of the running early on. I'm nowhere near deciding on my preference but two I'd look at for this party are Bill Richardson, governor of New Mexico and Michael Bloomberg, Mayor of New York City.
Richardson for his experience not only as governor, but also as congressman, Secretary of Energy, U.N. Ambassador and his superb negotiating skills. Bloomberg for his financial acumen and business skills. Perhaps it wouldn't be a bad idea to look to a real businessman to lead this country rather than one who's entire career has been spent feeding at the public trough.
It will be interesting to see if Unity '08 can pull it together. It's a time for fresh faces and perspectives. Is it time too for a viable third party?