College Dem exec jumps ship as Party drifts to extreme left

A National Councilman for the College Democrats of America is jumping ship and considering joining the Republican Party just before President-elect Trump takes the oath of office.

Michael J. Hout, a junior at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, told Campus Reform that he believes the contemporary Democratic Party is no longer the best place for an ideological moderate like himself, saying the Party is pivoting towards more extremist rhetoric and appealing more to those who often do not even consider themselves Democrats, such as socialists and independents.

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“This strategy of catering to the whims of those for whom identity politics matters more than anything else, and of allowing for even anti-white, anti-male rhetoric to find a home within the party, is a large part of its untenable strategy moving forward,” Hout explained, predicting that “it will continue to cause Democrats to lose, time and time again.”

Hout, the former National Chartering Director and Northeast Regional Director for the College Democrats, as well as the vice president for the College Democrats of Massachusetts and the president of the UMass Amherst College Democrats chapter, does not take leaving the party lightly, but believes it is essential.

In fact, not only does he plan to leave the Democrats and abdicate his position with the campus CD chapter, but Hout even says he sees himself potentially joining the Republican Party soon.

“Assuming Republicans will have me, and that those on the left assuring Armageddon will ensue with the Trump Administration are wrong, I think becoming a Republican makes the most sense for me,” he said, adding that “I look forward to fighting the uncompromising liberalism that drove me out of the Democratic Party for the good of the nation, and all who depend on us.”

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“This just isn't the party of Jack, Bobby, or Ted Kennedy anymore,” he continued. “It's losing its edge for a number of reasons...and the price it’s going to pay is losing people like me, and more importantly- losing elections.”

Hout feels like he fits in better with conservative college students because he believes they are more open to “reasonable discourse” on issues they might disagree with.

“Conservatives my age tend to be far more willing to engage in those conversations than liberals, the worst of [whom] enter any conversation with the delusional notion that their worldview is undeniably superior, and absolutely the ideal moral paradigm,” he said.

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“Most Americans are not hardline leftists or conservatives. Most agree with each other on individual issues,” Hout observed. “This tribalism we're selling—where one's position on abortion should dictate their position on guns, immigration, and education—is toxic. If you're looking at the issues with reason, where facts are king, your views on other issues, your skin color, whether you're gay or straight…most of the time it shouldn't make a difference. But we've decided to join tribes and make politics a team sport, where that which is true comes in a distant second to that which my side believes.”

In December, Hout helped start The American Moderate, a group blog intended to offer political articles tailored to either side, writing in an introductory post that “our hope is that readers...will be exposed to ideas, beliefs, and policies that the echo chambers of our social media society have foreclosed.”

Hout, who was an Advance Intern for the Hillary Clinton campaign and attended the campaign’s election night party on Nov. 8, also reflected that while he was upset and surprised that the woman he supported throughout the election was not victorious, he agreed with the candidate when she said in her concession speech that Trump deserves an open mind and a chance to lead.

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“I may not agree with everything Trump has to say, all the time, but as president I will respect him and wish him success and good health,” Hout declared, speculating coyly that “as the war for identity politics, political correctness, and speech control commences, perhaps Trump could be just what the doctor ordered.”

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @kassydillon