Independents Rising—Excerpt on Huffington Post

Today, the Huffington Post ran an excerpt of Jackie Salit’s new book, Independents Rising: Outsider Movements, Third Parties and The Struggle for A Post-Partisan America.  The book hits the shelves tomorrow and to kick it off, Jackie will be appearing on Fox and Friends tomorrow morning at 8:15 am.  Hope you will get a chance to watch.  And you can visit Jackie at her new website.

Author Jackie Salit's website
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Salit has been getting a lot of advance praise.  Publishers Weekly  had this to say:

“Given the upcoming presidential election, Salit’s earnest and informative book is sure to be consulted by those trying to understand the enigmatic and influential independent voter. Independents first spilled into the mainstream with the 1992 presidential campaign of Ross Perot (who garnered 19% of the popular vote) and have been a driving source of politics ever since. Salit, president of and publisher of The Neo-Independent magazine, details the history of independents from Perot to Bloomberg and into the age of Obama. Covering both national and regional concerns, the book is strongest when it demystifies the movement itself. As Salit emphatically illustrates, independents are not motivated by ideology but, rather, by a desire to reform the current political system. Such reforms would include opening up primary elections and the end of partisan dominance. Salit often touts her credentials within the movement, but her closeness to the story serves to highlight the book’s weaknesses, which include the sometimes defensive tone, bland anecdotes about lunch meetings, and confusing accounts of political infighting. Regardless, the book gives necessary voice to voters who are fed up with partisan politics and desire change. Agent: Robert Guinsler, Sterling Lord Literistic. (Aug.)”

And from KIRKUS:

The independent movement began to grow in the 1970s when Fred Newman launched the New Alliance Party in an attempt to beat back the bipartisan election process. The party gained acceptance among minorities and progressive whites, groups who felt they had been shut out of the system. In 1988, Leonora Fulani, the party’s presidential candidate, was slated on the ballot of all 50 states—not only the first woman, but also the first African-American to do so. As the NAP expanded, their influence was felt in both local and national politics. Eventually, Fulani and Newman joined Nicholas Sabatine to form the Patriot Party, which was absorbed in California by the Reform Party. As the quest expanded across the country, the candidacy of Ross Perot really put the independent movement on the map. Salit managed Michael Bloomberg’s mayoral race for the Independence Party, proving that they could be a great influence in politics. Two other significant instances in which independent voters displayed their power were the 2008 presidential election and the 2010 congressional elections. As she explains the pitfalls of political life, the author demonstrates her expertise in the fight to give nonpartisan voters a more potent voice in the democratic process. Fighting against the strong political machines of a two-party system may seem Sisyphean now, but Salit’s story of how well they’ve done so far inspires hope that one day they will succeed.  

Founder of the Politics for the People free educational series and book club for independent voters. Chair of the New York County Independence Party.

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