I don't think much of Arnold Schwarzenegger's "creative centrism" (see earlier post), but I caught him on ABC's "This Week" yesterday, and he made an intriguing point: Independents are becoming more numerous and therefore more important to the political process. They will likely play a big role in the 2008 presidential race.
I wonder if 2008 will be a contest in which a third party will make a big difference. I think a case could be made. We're going to spend all of this year hearing about Democratic and Republican candidates that aren't all that compelling to begin with, so we're going to start the actual campaign season with a huge dose of voter burnout. That should create a great opportunity for a third party.
And I don't mean a race that's so close that a third party's 1 or 2 percent could make the difference. I mean an electorate that's so sick and tired of the whole thing that it could give a third party the 19 percent Ross Perot got or better.