Thursday Numbers

Thanks for stopping by The Western Word – are you ready for your free dose of knowledge?

“Thursday Numbers” is the weekly column where I take a look at the numbers that are in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary (sometimes spiked with sarcasm) just to make you smile, shake your head, or make you send me nasty e-mails or Tweets.

This week I write about Fox News & Bin Laden, Taylor Swift, CNN, Keystone XL pipeline, unemployment, Democratic Party, sinkholes, statements from Montana politicians, GOP 2015 Calendar, U.S. Senate, YouTube, President Barack Obama, earthquake, first female president of the Montana Senate, the circus is coming, and a whole lot more!

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Campaign 2014: Third Political Party Needed

Honor is not the exclusive property of any political party. – Herbert Hoover

Gallup released a new poll this morning about the need for a third political party.

According to Gallup, “A majority of U.S. adults, 58%, say a third U.S. political party is needed because the Republican and Democratic parties ‘do such a poor job’ representing the American people.”

Gallup also reported, “Americans’ current desire for a third party is consistent with their generally negative views of both the Republican and Democratic parties, with only about four in 10 viewing each positively. Americans’ views toward the two major parties have been tepid for much of the last decade.”

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Caught My Eye…

Thanks for stopping by to read “Caught My Eye” and congratulations on making it to another Friday!

NOTICE: The Western Word has no secret waiting lists.

If you are a first-time visitor, “Caught My Eye” is posted right here every Friday morning! This is when I take a quick look at some of the stories I did not have time to write about during the week. I often throw in a touch of sarcasm to make you smile – or to irritate you just a little.

Today I write about Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee & Jon Tester, John Walsh v. Steve Daines, Political Parties, Common Core, Execution, plus we have a winner who is Making Montana Proud!

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Political Independents & Bigfoot

Note: I spent most of Tuesday morning at the U.S. Federal Courthouse for jury duty. I was not selected, so I am back in the saddle today. Yes, there will be a future column about my adventure.


In political campaigns most strategists contend that if you maintain your base of support (the party faithful) and draw votes from the middle, the candidate who can draw the most people from the middle – the independent voter – will win the contest.

Almost every campaign consultant and manager pretty much knows how many people identify themselves as independents in a particular state, district, and precinct. These are the people they need to win the race.

The number of independents is growing. According to Gallup:

Forty-two percent of Americans, on average, identified as political independents in 2013, the highest Gallup has measured since it began conducting interviews by telephone 25 years ago.

It looks like many of those identified as political independents came from the Republican Party, so that means that some Republican candidates will need more independent votes to win races. Gallup also reports:

Meanwhile, Republican identification fell to 25%, the lowest over that time span. At 31%, Democratic identification is unchanged from the last four years but down from 36% in 2008.

I think the Republicans can probably blame the Tea Party for their losses. It appears since the Tea Party has taken over more and more of the Republican Party, we have seen an exodus of moderates. There’s no place to go but the independent route.

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