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tv   Inside Story  Al Jazeera  October 4, 2014 3:30am-4:01am EDT

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annual hajj pilgrimage, and it's also eid, 1.4 pilgrims are expected in mecca this year. you can keep up to date with all the news on the website at republicans are ready to answer none of the above, and that's having an p>> democrat, republican, more republicans are ready to answer none of the above, and that's
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>> you've got a republican governor. you've got a republican house and senate. you need a republican u.s. senator. i'm happy to be here today. >> congress and the president both have record low approval numbers. that has cast libertarians, independents and others in a whole different light. if there is energy behind another option it's source is most likely an overall contempt for both parties. a recent survey by gallop underscores this. do the republican and democratic parties do an adequate job representing the american people or do this do such a poor job that a third party is needed, 58% said that a third party is
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needed. 35 there's say that's right do an adequate job. >> it's in that spirit that jim jenkins has shaped the message in his campaign for a senate seat from nebraska. jenkins is pro-life, a self-proclaimed a centrist. his case is not to caucus with either party. some gubernatorial races feature third party candidates as well. history would be made in maine if independent eliott cutler was to defeat republican paula page. maine already has an independent senator in angus king elected in in 2012. at a time of sagging approval for the two major parties its
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still the case that just about every single man and woman who comes to washington in january to swear in to the new congress is going to be either a republican or a democrat. what role do third parties play? what role could they play in our politics? joining us for that conversation betsy woodruff is the politics writer. michael shure, al jazeera america political analysts and arie robinoff from sirius xm radio. where is the room in our politics for a third party? >> ray, one of the interesting things when you play jim jenkins saying his promise he would caucus neither with republicans or democrats. they come to washington, as you see with berni saunders caucusing with the democrats and even greg
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orman said he would caucus with the majority. there are no independents in washington. it happens on the election campaign trail. it's very difficult to take the traction you've gained on a state level and take it to washington, and then have that independent streak lived. it's too stifling with the two parties. >> do you feel it's more of an ideological reflection? >> it's generally not successful. the vast majority of independent candidates don't pull it off. in orman's case it makes sense. he's donated to hillary clinton and obama. so in that specific instance it could be working. however, most of the other cases that we see the libertarian candidates are not that competitive. it only changes the dynamics of the race. >> given where the republicans
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are and where the democrats are we've been told by tollsters that we've never had party caucuses as polarized as they are now. republicans bluer, democrats redder. where is there a space for a third party, or is there any? >> most of the third-party candidate that we're looking at are more to the fringes. berni sanders is an independent way to the left. you're seeing libertarian candidates who occupy more on the right take over. you're not seeing a depolarization. the deep trend is further polarization of the third parties. >> is that where voter sentiment is? they want one that is a little bit of one and a little bit of another. >> i think what voters want, and we've talked about this, ray, voters want candidates who stand for something. when they see a libertarian,
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they see someone who is not playing on the team just because their jersey is blue or red. it's not about polarization meeting people on the far right or far left. i don't think they see americans seeing washington that way. they're seeing washington not working for them. that's where the third parties come in. >> where do you make of michael's point where there is no such thing of an independent once you get here. you may be an independent back home, and when you're running statewide races and commercials. >> i think on one hand that is true. but we're seeing further fracturing on the hill. the divides are very deep and intense. more and more members of that caucus are bucking leadership and trying to push out speaker boehner that don't typically jive with what you would expect from them. so on the one hand, yes, people are going to be part of a certain party team. but on the other hand these riffs are becoming more acute. >> functioning you have to caucus. i spent time as a senior stauffer, i worked on the house side, you have to caucus with
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somebody or you don't get assi assigned to committees, you get nothing done. these guys have to come to washington and make a choice. but the power of leadership in the house has gone way down. and member are much freer to vote to take on issues, to buck their leadership. you've seen this a lot in the republican caucus, and frankly if democrats took over the house you would see it in the democratic caucus as well. >> michael, you heard betsy note that as a practical matter, being independent is not a successful strategy. are we creating a new kind of electorate with less allegiance to parties, or that may not be so true in coming cycles? >> you know, i don't--i see no indication that anything is happening to that degree as you described it. i think betsy is absolutely right. there is nothing that anybody who watches this can forecast to say, you know what, in the future these independent candidates are going to be able
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to win and win on mass so that there is a third party in washington, and i think that's--that's the shame of it all. but they do make a difference in these ideas do make a difference. but they do stand in the way of other candidates. that is sort of their only purpose. where you're seeing the kind of ideas of a third party candidate happen in washington is exactly what was described. the fracturing in the parties is real, and then you see candidates on the campaign trail running against that. so you have somebody like nebraska, where he'll mostly likely win. he is the republican running there. he has run from the very beginning against mitch mcconnell. the diminishing power of leadership is the only glimmer of hope. but winning is still very difficult even on a local level when you're a third-party candidate. >> especially looking at the fact that most of these
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candidates don't win. however, they can change the way that the two parties communicate to voters. when a significant number of voters vote for an independent or libertarian that's the message to the party heads in washington that there is this group of untapped voters who aren't happy who they could reach out to. one thing that we've seen republicans do is try to reach out to more young libertarian-leaning folks. there is a sense that lots of people don't like either parties, and that parties should be courting them. when people vote for a third party or independent candidate even though they're unlikely to see that candidate in office it sends a message. >> we see libertarian hero rand paul trying to douse the hopes of libertarian line candidate in north carolina. >> he wants his party in the majority. rand paul, he may have
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libertarian ideology, and he's a republican and he endorses mitch mcconnell in the primary of his own state. he's a republican true and true, and kay hagin in the senate is bad for his party. it's harder for his party and harder for him to play a significant role in political-making process. >> when we return we'll talk about the effect that third parties already have on our politics. whether it's endorsement s, ballot lines, do they poll successful candidates left or right, have a levinning effect on the political debate. stay with us. >> kentucky, a state that's hurting economically. >> when the mines shut down it affects other businesses too you know, it hurts everything. >> some say it's time for a change. >> mitch has been in there so long. >> while others want to stay the course. >> all the way mitch!
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you know exactly what these people needs in kentucky. >> communities trying to cope. what does the future hold? >> the economy, the struggling coal industry and healthcare are all impacting their vote. >> "america votes 2014 / fed up in kentucky". all next week. only on al jazeera america.
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>> the libertarian party has a ballot line in 35 states. the green party feels candidates
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in 20 states. the constitution party in 14. and although the working families party has valid access in five states one of them is giant newark and major party candidates has the working family endorsement. we're looking at third parties in the run up to the election, betsy, might they have an affect not necessarily on winning on that line, but if you have another access to a deficient group of voters who might not look at you, when you can run in multiple places does it help you, but does it effect the way you talk to voters? >> i think without a doubt. if we look at florida and you've got rick scott and charlie krist. both have 100% name i.d.s, but they report so low. adrian wiley has been fairly competitive and he has
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capitalized on the old rand paul infrastructure that existed in florida. the fact that they're seeing these numbers and even though small, very noticeable energy in favor of the libertarian, i think it will change on impact when they talk to issues, particularly on medical marijuana, which is on the ballot there. >> do they want to steal thunder, or do the access to other ballot lines create openings for candidates in states where that is a factor. >> my feeling about those ballot lines and these parties with so many different news is that it really kind of--it delights the message of an independent party. if you have an independent candidate running as an independent in these sort of quick brush overs that so many people give to politics they see the constitution party. they don't know what that means. i would argue that there are a lot of people, younger voters who have no idea what a libertarian is. when a libertarian is formed they were very different as
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pointed out, they were very different from what rand paul is as a libertarian. when you have an independent candidate in the state it would give them far more--i would say far more of a following. i would think that you're seei seeing, in north carolina, two states we've discussed, in maine, the congressman from the second district there, who is running as a democrat, who knows that eliott cutler got 36.5% of the vote in 2010, and needs to take some of that in order to beat la page. they don't do it on issues but electability. if it comes down to issues, then it becomes wo wonky, and if would help la page. and they're afraid he will take republican votes, but he's for medical marijuana and those sorts of issues could attract democratic votes.
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that's where it's more issues-based. i just see the messages get something diluted that they really don't stand as independents but obstacles. >> ari is that true? why do candidates court those third parties and look for their nod when it's offered? if they matter as much as--as little-- >> take new york, you have to have a situation what's known as fusion voting. where i could serve on two tickets. there are very few states who can do this. in new york the democratic party always wants to be on the working family party. and the democratic candidate wants to be on that ticket just as the republican party candidate was to be on the ballot. working for andrew cuomo is a signal i'm voting for you but i'm to the left. it is a way to push candidates in the left with fusion voting,
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but that is few and far between. the bigger cases are places like north carolina, places, frankly, like the presidential election in 2000 which i think gives progressives ajita, an i think you see more of a move of libertarian among republicans than greens among democrats because mainly democrats generally have ajita about elect electability. >> but the presence of another line. you either don't want another human being in that line because they may end upstanding next to you in a debate, or you want to steal their thunder, don't you? don't you want to preempt their message? >> look at what happened in new york. andrew cuomo, where he gave the working family's party a bunch of things they wanted pushing
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from the commitment to push for a living wage to internal deal in new york politics where he had to go campaign against a bunch of senators who would swap the senate to republicans. so he had given up in negotiated a bunch of things with the working family parties. there was controversy, but victory for the state. >> there is purpose here. you could in one state threaten a candidate with an opponent unless they want to talk with you on a certain number of key issues, right? >> yes, absolutely. i think these third-party candidates with work as levers to change the way incumbents move. going back to maine, sometimes they're a christmas present for candidates. because of eliott cutler the independent always siphons off a
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huge would-be democratic voters, he had a huge shot of being elected. and we see the same thing in south dakota where the governor is polling less than 40, he's still the frontrunner and presumed oner because of two other third-party candidates. sometimes they do a huge favor for candidates who are further to the fringe and want their opposition to be split. >> we'll be back with more inside story after a short break. third-party races this time on the program. in kansas greg or rman is being agey, an cagey. stay with us.
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>> you're watching inside story on al jazeera america. i'm ray suarez. the republicans need 51 senate
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votes to run the place. the democrats need 50 with vice president joe biden as their tiebreaking vote to maintain control. it's easy to come up with combinations of outcomes that feature 50 republicans, 49 democrats, and greg orman, the kansas independent to unseat republican pat roberts in kansas. still with us, betsy woodruff is a politics writer for the washington examiner newspapers. michael shure and ari robinoff is the host of agenda on sirius xm. you could run the agenda six way to supplied and become up with a nottingham foster or close to nottingha knot, and close to knot. >> you could see promises of
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legislation, promises of prom mans being tossed by both parties. i frankly don't think that greg orman is going to win in kansas. i think that's a long shot. i think as you get closer to the election you'll see more and more dissatisfied voters rico he vote voters retest coalesc recoalesce around candidates. there. >> there is tillman the margin of error, and is everybody coming home? >> i think that people do come home. that gives the democrats pause in a state like georgia, where there are more people who can come home to republicans. you know, we hear so much by these republicans in names only,
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but there are people who will come out and say they're against this and that, but when it comes time to actually cast their vote they're going to go to the republican or incumbent. that's something that will help mitch mcconnell and georgia's governor. betsy brought up the race in south dakota. that's one to pay attention to, i believe, because there is an independent there. he happens to have been a former republican senator larry press letter, and there is a candidate for governor who is not terribly popular in his party. that's more than sean hawai' haw can do in north north carolina. i think kansas is one of these anomaly states.
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>> and you've got a tight kansas governor race which may hurt or help. >> yes, governor brown back is in huge trouble. he's far and away , he made tax cuts. and the state's bond rating was downgraded. it's a huge mess. but the national editorial committee responsible for giving the republicans the majority in the senate headed by jerry moran from kansas. if republicans don't get the senate majority because of the heads of the nsrc could not win a race in him homes state that will be mortifying. there are personalty issues on the line and we'll see that show up enormously in kansas. if republicans can nationalize that race and make it about
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obama and captor th capture the animous there is more at stake. >> one bright spot may be the governor's races. >> elected officials across the board, governors, senators, congressmen, the president takes ahead for managing the country. and when you have a situation like cans where sam brownback, his policies have created a down grade in the state's credit rating that is going to impact your electoral process. since republicans were so successful in winning so many state houses, that will come to roost, and democrats will take a number of governorships. >> not that i want you to look into a crystal ball, michael, but are you as down cast about the prospects for democrats and a lot of analyses are? >> yes, i would say realistic yes.
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i would say if i were a democrat i would not be excited, so i would be doing what we're doing, looking at places to pull a surprise, but it's going to be a tough slot, as everyone knows. i think their incumbents, you look at landrie u in louisiana. i wouldn't be excited. >> that brings us to the end of this edition of inside story. the program may be over but the program continues. we want to hear what you think about this or any day's show. send us your thoughts on twitter. our handle is aj inside story am or follow me on
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@ray suarez news. from washington, i'm ray suarez. >> hard work! >> hard work! >> dedication! >> dedication! >> hard work! >> hard work! >> dedication! >> dedication! >> i didn't ever tell y'all this little story guys, about david and goliath. the big ol' giant and the little ol' david. that big ol' giant it was the hurricanes, the ones that was


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