Run progressive republican (Justice Republican?)

Howdy, I’m a long time fan, mostly watching on YouTube. I’d like to discuss running progressives in the republican (R) party. There are issues with this, but I think the merits could be worthwhile.

Lets say we have a R candidate platforming progressive policy popular among R voters, and also compromising progressive policy unpopular among R voters; (eg: pro paid family leave, pro taxing wealth, pro banning PAC bribes, pro gun rights, pro-life, pro small business, etc). The specific policy compromises would need more study than my top of mind examples, and would depend on the electorate. This type of candidate could cooperate with Justice Democrats (JD) and other democrats (D) to secure progressive policy results for constituents, while demonstrating “moderation” when working across the aisle on issues R voters approve of. Over time I think this dynamic would push corporate D left (granting more leverage for JD to pull left), and would ideally grow to eventually pull other R leftward.

Such a progressive would tap into R populist funding, which would’ve never gone towards progressive agenda otherwise, would limit said funding for non progressive R populists, and would also not cut into funding for typical JD populist while providing JD allies. Such a candidate may promise to finish Trump’s wall, while also collaborating with JD to actually deliver on that, but with details which in sum actually improve migrant and asylum process, and improve conditions for R constituents (eg: build the wall, remove barbed wire, reform legal process, transport from R into D constituencies, etc). Or imagine the chips fell such that the R were able to deliver on wall policy without needing any D support, then having a progressive on the inside could mitigate the harm (eg: reducing the forced sterilizations), or could weaken the policy (eg: an expiration on funding the construction), and could plan politics strategically (eg: funding the wall with policy design based on MMT logic for other progressive policies to leverage politically).

Some of R voters will simply never even consider D policies / politicians, and this type of progressive strategy can accommodate such voters (anyone know reliable data on this?). I personally live in an overall blue state, and I have such family that will never vote blue, despite having learned the hard way that Trump is moving R to fascism. They have said they would love a progressive R candidate. That may be anecdotal, but for certain is representative of some amount of R voters, (we would hope a growing amount). But, I don’t think this political tactic would work in just any R election, especially if not done with great care, and with campaign experience.

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I also think about how JD are(?) retaking the D party. Progressives need to also board the “opposition”, (to use the corporate framing, as if most D are not our actual corporate opposition). In order for boarding the D party to feasibly move them left, progressives need the R party to also turn left, (especially to triangulate on the actual corporate opposition). If anyone has a reason to argue otherwise, that we don’t need to turn the R leftward, please make your case so we can discuss it. If I imagine the R never turning left, then the D party will always have political space to marginalize JD, (not to mention the D would use the threat of R moving right to keep JD in line with corporate D agenda). If I imagine the R turning left, then that dynamic works in JD favor by outflanking corporate D. Lastly here, possibly the two party dynamic would eventually break down, and so my framing wouldn’t actually apply, but then such chaos I suspect could risk favoring fascism given our political climate.

So boarding both parties seems better than boarding just one to me. And I think it would help to pass progressive policies, and to move both parties left. And it would mitigate risks of R policies that might pass without D cooperation. And it would expand progressive funding, and cut into right wing funding. But, where this could work to start would need more research than I have. And the timeframes of this idea is also beyond me. Finding the right candidates would also be tricky.

Surely most of us do not like the idea of compromising progressive values. It’s like I’m basically suggesting we accept cases of sacrifice our birthing person’s right to choose, or sacrificing our migrant neighbors (or some other priority, depending on the constituency details). I guess I don’t like it much either. But I also don’t really see an alternative though. Like, even if I’m wrong and we don’t necessarily need to help move the R left by promoting compromised progressive politics, we probably should anyway just to minimize harm and accelerate change, and especially just in case it is necessary. I’ve been thinking about these things for a few years, and Cenk’s appeals to compromising where we can makes me think this is worth suggesting.

Stay strong, and protect the weak. <3

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I think that this could work.

Preferable not pro life though, I believe the majority of americans are pro choice. Perhaps we could change it to “pro-parent/mom” ?


Yeah, I had similar thoughts. Mostly the positions I listed were examples for my point. I anticipate the issues in practice would depend on the constituency in question. And so yeah, I expect pro-choice would probably be the position for most cases.

On a side note, I’ve seen a few other threads along similar lines to this topic.

I’ve often thought this might work. Winning the republican primary would be the only real challenge. If you have an R in front of your name in a red district, you’re in. Policy makes no never mind to republican voters.


I brought this up a while ago elsewhere, but I got the sense others thought I was trolling. I think this is a very good idea.

I will say ditch the freaking wall. If we took the wall money and just gave it to governments in the form of army core projects we would be vastly ahead. The only issues is the distrust we earned in some countries we should help. The other is the absurd lies many from our country believe about any solution coming from a wall.

We need an fair robust immigration process above all else. The problem isn’t that they are coming, it is how we receive them. Financial equity firms are speculating in these markets. Those firms are a huge reason why the governments are failing and the migration is taking place.

I cannot pretend a wall is going to fix anything, but encourage some sad clowns.

Honestly we must fix wages at the same time due to the fact that the real issue people want help with. It is just they have been lied to about it being about some immigrant.

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So, let me clarify my point about the wall, and how it applies to this idea.

First, I should say I largely agree with your points, especially about the functional impotency of a wall. However, my primary point for this idea is to provide R voters most of what they are asking for. If a constituency wants a wall, then this idea advocates that we do indeed build the wall. And, in the legislation to do that, we would also reform and improve migration and asylum processes. Other considerations such as funneling migrants into more dangerous migration paths, or harming local ecology, etc, would ideally also be addressed, (like, designated migration ports of entry sans ICE militancy, and rerouting around ecologically sensitive geography, etc). And as a tangent, we could design the building process as a MMT social experiment providing training and jobs, thus politically enabling future policies to follow this MMT example leading to jobs guarantee.

To summarize, it is the passing of the wall that enables the other progressive priorities to be passed; or more accurately, it is the passing of R voters’ priorities which enables progressive priorities to be passed in collaboration. It is an outflanking of the corporate politicians within both parties along the axis’ of collaboration, moderation, and especially actually delivering on what voters want. Actually passing what R voters want builds favor among R electorate, leading to momentum among a growing progressive R block within an otherwise imploding R party. That is the point of this idea.

Without progressive politicians sacrificing their positions for something that R voters want, (eg JD collaborating with R to build a wall), how else could progressive politicians reach out to R voters? We can’t just pretend that realizing progressive policies would actually be better for R voters than carefully compromised policies, because then it feeds into the reality that the left wing too often thinks it knows better than the right wing about what they should want.

The suggestion to “ditch” the wall, if it is to follow the idea I’m suggesting, must imply we would provide some other priority that R voters actively want (not just what we think they should want). Or, it is implying we wouldn’t provide R voters anything they want, while expecting them to be satisfied with un-passed progressive policies.

Hopefully this isn’t coming across as rude. I have issues with tact, especially when attempting to delineate things. <3

PS, I haven’t made it explicit, but, I expect wasting money on a wall to be mostly irrelevant, economically speaking. Sure, I’d rather we use funds more productively, but it is not actively harmful to the economy to increase public deficit spending. (I could elaborate on MMT more if people want to ask about that). And so, the reasons why the wall is a good example for compromise are: it is harmless to spend on, the various potential benefits to leverage, and it is actively desired by R voters.

Yes. I like it. I don’t think we have to trick voters at all and we can totally take over the republican party. I’m picturing someone saying ’ the party is broken. It’s been taken over by a bunch of fat-cat elitist hypocrites. I’m for supporting workers, helping poor families and small businesses, and holding government accountable to the will of the people.’ Let’s see how many people vote for a republican with that kind of message. Thanks jared123456. Good work.


Thanks for the input pipiwige :slight_smile: I totally agree on it not being about tricking voters. A key point is to provide voters with enough of what they want. Of course, compromises will cause some agitation, and political savviness would ideally help with that.

Targeting the right place and time with the right candidate and the right platform is a bit of a puzzle, which would take an organized team to sort out. To me, I think the harder part of this idea is finding the right candidates. Like, I imagine running a rather typical if savvy progressive, so long as they are committed to democracy and would be willing to ignore their own political preferences in favor of what their voters want (eg building the wall). But on the other hand, it shouldn’t be too hard to find what some might call a less than typical progressive, (which ironically may be quite typical of progressive infighting, lol). Such persons may be found among our MAGA neighbors, since many share progressive priorities (obviously I’m not referring to the more extreme MAGA crowds). And also non-MAGA republicans could have what it takes. And independents; (basically most any stripe could work).

This makes me wonder, what does it take, more specifically? I would imagine no corporate campaign bribes could be fairly obvious. The candidate would need to have a compromise / moderate mindset. They need political savviness. They need to be charismatic among their constituency. We would need a team to research various constituencies to find areas ripe for compromised progressive policies, including what specific compromises we expect constituents could make. Perhaps we would also collaborate with JD to strategize which compromises we want to find. The candidate would need the right mix of a progressive and less-than-progressive policy platform, aligned with the previous research.

I think people with campaign experience in red and purple areas would know more. I’m kind of hoping more people chime in and point out the flaws so far, then maybe we could dig in more to details. An issue coming to mind for me is how this plan plays out over time. With multiple such candidates, how will they interact? How will the corporate establishment respond?

Yeah, and I anticipate that the establishment would eventually wise up to this plan (let’s be honest, they’re so scared they are already spying here). They would run against us, including their media bs. I’m not sure what to think about it yet. Perhaps we could still get a few, maybe even enough candidates through the establishment obstruction, probably mostly depending on the opportunities we could find among constituencies.

There’d be no reason for anyone to get wise to it. There’s no nefarious plan. Just run in the Republican primary on a progressive platform, and when asked “why aren’t you running as a Democrat?” the answer would simply be, “because I want to win, and Democrats are losers.” The sound bite alone would be worth millions in free advertising.


LOLOLOL. yes. I must say, good sir, I love your attitude.

Though, regarding those getting wise, I think the establishment / oligarchy would target progressives in R party probably worse than we are targeted in D party. I think, from the establishment perspective, especially R party establishment, they would say we are being nefarious, (which actually means good for voters, so yeah not truly nefarious). Their targeting should be used as PR fuel to demonstrate how the elites are against paid family leave and such. But, still, I just meant to point out that we would be targeted, (and probably are currently being observed), and then ask how we might plan around it.

Like, can we anticipate specifically any ways the oligarchy could target us that would indeed be a significant obstacle? I’m not too familiar with institutional political barriers, but things like superdelegates come to mind.

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True, theyd be pretty vicious. But… Republican voters tend to shrug off press and go on feeling. The press was BRUTAL to Trump in 2020, and he still came a cat whisker within winning. Say what you want about Republican voters, but they’ll do WHATEVER the **** they want.

I might have an approach to abortion that could help. ‘I hate abortion, but it shouldn’t be up to me, and it sure as hell shouldn’t be up to the government. Leaving it to the states is not working. Rowe was a valid compromise. The people deserve a compromise.’ Religious fundamentalists might raise hell, but small government folks can get on board, I think.


It occurs to me, running progressives in both parties kind of makes the two party duopoly obsolete in a way that could be described as a parallel structure for partisan politics.

Also, as a side note, anyone interested in branding? I think Justice Republican is not great.

I wish people with campaign experience would chime in. I would ask about where we should start running progressive republicans, to begin. Like:

Should we start in states where a JD is also elected? Or is that not important?

Are places with open primaries a good idea, or not?


Anyone have any other ideas or questions along such lines?

To your point, I totally agree.

I would like to offer a perspective on how we got here. Because, in order to solve a problem, the problem needs to be defined.

It all started under Clinton. He moved the D’s to the right. Outside of some social issues, Clinton was a R in D clothing.

So what happens next?

The Repugs see this as well, and realize the opportunity to move even further right! Obama was no better, he afforded additional room to move further right. Over this time the D-rats, had to (and willingly) became corporatized.

By now, the people realized that the D-rats were all talk and couldn’t deliver. Then once they anointed Hillary in 2016 the gig was up, and we got Trump.

We were very fortunate to get a Biden win in 2020, but all it did so far was to buy some time. Biden’s entire corporatist presidency just kicks the can down the road.

An autocracy, lies just around the corner.

Again, to your point: This is how we got here. The key will be to reverse the trend. Your idea is a good one. The job won’t be easy.