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Give Centrism a Chance

Progressives certainly should never be satisfied with the status quo. But with voters increasingly exhausted by years of political polarization, progressive parties that are serious about gaining and retaining power would be well advised to reconsider their opposition to centrism.

NEW YORK – Europe’s progressive intelligentsia have come to scorn political “centrism.” A misguided focus on the middle ground, critics argue, precludes the formulation of political alternatives, leading to the rise of extremist parties on the left and right. Seen through this lens, the corollaries of centrism are populism, polarization, and ultimately growing distrust of democratic principles.