Our “leaders” would read this, because Dave Johnson is absolutely right: Appealing to the center does drive away voters:
Have you heard of the “Moveable Middle?” This is the idea that there are voters on the left who will always vote on the left, and voters on the right, who will always vote on the right, and then there are voters between them who switch back and forth. They are called “swing voters.”
So the idea in politics is that in order to win elections you have to take positions that appeal to these voters, and they will “switch” and vote for you instead of for the other side. This is a fundamental mistake.
Here is what is very important to understand about the “swing” vote: No voters “switch.” That is the wrong lesson. There are not voters who “swing”; there are left voters and right voters in this middle segment who either show up and vote or do not show up and vote, and this causes this “swing” segment to swing.
The lesson to learn: You have to deliver for YOUR part of that swing segment or they don’t show up and vote for you. That is what makes the segment “swing.”