HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — Houston is preparing for a political convention with hundreds of people attending, but they are not Democrats or Republicans.
They are with the Forward Party, and organizers say it’s gaining traction.
There are some people who believe some Democrats have extreme views, and on the other end, Republicans have extreme views.
Everyone in the Forward Party believes in finding common ground in the middle.
At least 1,300 people have registered for the Forward Party convention this weekend in Houston. That’s a lot more than the 200 people that organizers first expected.
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“Sort of look at American’s views, they are common sense, sort of center of the road people, and we don’t have a political party that represents that group,” Bill King, a party leader in Texas, explained the growth.
He said the party is interested in the same issues most Americans want to be solved, but works on solutions without attacking a person who disagrees with them.
“As opposed to two sides that are diametrically opposed, screaming at each other all the time, all of a sudden you have a mediator in the middle saying, ‘Wait a minute, what about we do this from your side and this from our side?'” he said.
One example is abortion, which he notices is an issue that comes with extreme views.
“You can never have an abortion under these circumstances, or you ought to be able to have one under any circumstances; most Americans think the earlier the pregnancy, there probably ought not to be that many restrictions, but as you get further in the pregnancy, you probably need to have a pretty good reason to have an abortion,” King said. “That’s the common sense view of Americans that’s not reflected by either one of these parties.”
King said the Forward Party has a presence in 37 states, and more than 20,000 people have volunteered to help organize the party.
A political expert said that while the party is gaining attention, its influence will have the most impact.
“The Forward Party is most likely to affect U.S. politics not by winning seats or becoming a realistic alternative to the Democrat and Republican Party, but by demonstrating enough success at the polls that the major parties feel compelled to at least adopt some of their issues,” Mark Jones, a political science professor at Rice University, said.
King understands it’s not for everybody.
“We’re not trying to replace the Republicans or the Democrats,” he said. “There are people who are comfortable in those parties, and that’s good for them. If they are comfortable, that’s where they should stay, but a lot of us are not.”
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