The Democratic Leadership Council: An Explanation of the Organization through an Examination of Education Policy
AbstractFounded in 1984 by a group of moderate Southern politicians, the Democratic Leadership Councilâ€™s goal was to move the Democratic Party toward the center of the political spectrum. Although it struggled at firstthe DLC caught a break in 1992 when Bill Clinton, one of the organizationâ€™s founders, was elected President. Since then the DLC has grown in size and become a major factor in national politics and policy making. The organization has achieved its success by pioneering a â€œThird Wayâ€ of approaching the problems that confront the nation. Instead of being couched in the old terms of â€œliberalâ€ and â€œconservative,â€ the DLC has moved the debate above partisan politics and toward logical solutions. Many feel that this move toward the center is the wave of the future in politics. But simply talking about the â€œThird Wayâ€ in an abstract manner is confusing. This essay, by taking one issue â€” in this case education reform â€” and examining ideas held by liberals, conservatives and â€œThird Wayers,â€ is an endeavor to make the purpose of the DLC more easily understood.
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