No Labels, No Policy, No Problem!


  • HYPOCRISY: Heartland Signal’s Richard Eberwein broke a story about leading Montana GOP Senate candidate Tim Sheehy’s nearly $800,000 PPP loan forgiveness. This is despite Sheehy raging against President Joe Biden’s student loan forgiveness program. “Take a loan, pay it back,” Sheehy said (but… did not do).
  • CONSPIRACY: From the “Is there any conspiracy theory Ron Johnson won’t believe?” file: The Wisconsin senator told a YouTube personality that it’s “certainly possible” that American intelligence agencies assassinated former President John F. Kennedy.
  • IDIOCY: U.S. Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi conducted a textbook takedown of two so-called Hunter Biden whistleblowers, illustrating that many of the complaints they have with the Department of Justice and U.S. Attorney overseeing the case are with decisions made by Trump appointees.

A so-called “centrist” political party called “No Labels” is gearing up for a presidential run…maybe?

According to some in the moderate sphere of American politics, the two major political parties have become just damn radical. On one hand, you have a Republican Party that is increasingly taking nods from far-right, white nationalist figures. On the other, there’s a Democratic president who invokes the revolutionary specter of socialists like Lyndon B. Johnson and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The center simply cannot hold with these two aggressive, unreasonable forces!

Thankfully, some fair-minded centrists have stepped up to the plate. Enter: No Labels. Founded as a nonprofit in 2010 by Democratic insider Nancy Jacobson and propelled into the legislative limelight by creating the (ugh) “Problem Solvers Caucus,” which is comprised of equal parts moderate Democrats and Republicans, No Labels have again gained traction in certain Washington circles for purporting to offer a compromise to political gridlock and partisanship.

(Nevermind that just five years prior, Jacobson and her cohort were taking funding from right-wingers like Peter Thiel and David Koch — to say nothing of their financial backing from tech moguls like LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman or billionaire Mark Cuban.)

For example, former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) and former senator, Democratic vice presidential candidate and man-without-a-country Joe Lieberman have recently joined the ranks to boost their credibility and supposedly non-ideological bonafides. And the “party,” if you can call them that, has been tepidly floating the idea of creating a convention for a presidential run. Useful idiots U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ) have been floated as possible options. It’s unclear exactly what the end goal of the project is, though a third-party run could prove consequential for the 2024 presidential race.

But nothing quite summed up the impotence of this collection of frantic hand-wringers like a recent interview between The New Yorker’s David Remnick and No Labels cheerleader and former North Carolina Republican Gov. Pat McCrory.

McCrory cited polling that pointed to an eagerness among the electorate to have other options outside of Trump and Biden. Totally fair! Where he gets lost is the idea that this means voters are hungry for people that ostensibly believe in outdated, austerity-minded policies from 30 years ago. Indeed, national polling indicates that only between 2-5% of voters would be genuinely invested in a “unity” ticket of two moderates from each party.

Furthermore, when pressed by Remnick for actual policies from the No Labels camp, McCrory — who kept stressing an organization that received $70 million in funding from guys like Harlan Crow is a “grassroots” movement — was wishy-washy, at best.

“We're not … going to play the game where each political party has a detailed platform, which then the candidates just ignore. In a lot of these issues, people are somewhere in the middle on those. The problem is the two parties are on the fringes with no compromise because you can't get through a primary if you dare compromise on some of these issues,” McCrory said.

“What are the beliefs that you have that you will not betray?” asked Remnick.

“I'm not on your time period. Sorry, because we're putting all our efforts right now … in getting on the ballot,” McCrory concluded.

Then the function of No Labels is clear: It’s not to actually achieve any kind of democratic victory. Rather, it’s to dilute urgent conversations surrounding issues like climate change, income inequality and criminal justice reform so those with a vested interest in the status quo can make sure any kind of grand bargain includes their minoritarian interests. If folks like McCrory and Manchin can threaten to kneecap progressive efforts, they will keep getting a seat at the table.

And that’s exactly why they’re being paid big bucks to potentially tilt political momentum to the right.


  • FOCUS ON WISCONSIN: College Towns are decimating the GOP (Politico).

“In isolation, it’s a worrisome development for Republicans. Unfortunately for the larger GOP, it’s not happening in isolation. In state after state, fast-growing, traditionally liberal college counties like Dane are flexing their muscles, generating higher turnout and ever greater Democratic margins. They’ve already played a pivotal role in turning several red states blue — and they could play an equally decisive role in key swing states next year,” writes Politico’s Charlie Mahtesian and Madi Alexander.

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Jamie Larson