Yang Gang 2.0: Former GOP Officials Join Up With Dems To Form New Party

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Andrew Yang announced a merger between his Forward Party and two political organizations led by former officials from across the political spectrum late Wednesday in the hopes of creating a viable national alternative to the Republican and Democratic parties.

Yang’s Forward Party has advocated for centrist and nonpartisan positions like ranked-choice voting, nonpartisan primaries and independent redistricting commissions, according to the party’s website. The Forward Party is now merging with the Renew America Movement (RAM) and Serve America Movement (SAM), which Yang notes in a press release will immediately make it the biggest third party in the country by staff and resources.

RAM was founded in 2021 by former officials from every Republican administration dating back to Reagan, while SAM includes Democrats, Republicans and independents, Reuters reported. Alongside Yang, the new Forward Party will be co-chaired by Christine Todd Whitman, a former Republican governor of New Jersey, according to Reuters.

Yang ran for President as a Democrat in 2020, but left the party in October 2021 to be able to be “more honest about both the system and the people in it,” he said.

The party will work to counteract the gridlock and hyper-partisanship in Washington, D.C., according to a Forward Party press release.

“This will be a political home for the majority of Americans who want to move past the era of divisiveness and do-nothing politicians – so that our government starts working again,” the release said, adding that the party will conduct a national tour in fall 2022 and host its first national convention in summer 2023. (RELATED: ‘Made That Decision’: Donald Trump Drops Another Hint About His 2024 Plans) 

“During my travels, I’ve met other leaders and organizers who recognize both the perilous state democracy is in and the opportunity for a new kind of politics,” Yang wrote in his press release. “After hundreds of hours of meetings and conversations, we realized that we could do more together than we could apart.”

The Forward Party is already on the ballot in several states, and hopes to be an option for voters in 15 states by the end of 2022, 30 states by the end of 2023 and all 50 by the end of 2024, Yang’s press release noted.

Third parties have historically struggled to find traction in U.S. politics but Forward Party members are confident that they can buck that trend, Reuters reported.

“The fundamentals have changed. When other third party movements have emerged in the past it’s largely been inside a system where the American people aren’t asking for an alternative. The difference here is we are seeing an historic number of Americans saying they want one,” Miles Taylor, a former Homeland Security official in the Trump administration now working with Forward, told Reuters.

In a statement, a Forward Party spokeswoman told the Daily Caller News Foundation that Forward is “reimagining” what a party platform can be.

“Rigid, top-down approaches have failed, because they drift constantly towards the extremes,” she said, so Forward will allow its leaders to pursue solutions at a state and local level.

“Forward San Francisco and Forward San Antonio will look very different. But they will be able to work together and find solutions that work for the majority of Americans because they are rooted in those shared values and have the freedom to innovate.”

The Republican National Committee and Democratic National Committee did not respond to requests for comment.

This story has been updated with comment from the Forward Party.

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