Former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang said in a blog post Monday he has changed his voting registration from Democrat to independent, after it was reported that he was planning to launch a new political party last month.
Yang said the political “system is stuck” because many public servants are “constrained” by their party, and he believes he can make a “greater impact” outside of the Democratic Party — though he did not say how.
Yang also said now that he isn’t a part of one party, he can be more “honest” about the “system and the people in it,” citing situations where he’s seen politicians “eviscerate” each other then act “collegial” minutes later or “publicly attack” him then call him privately to check if they were “still cool.”
He detailed his journey from registering as a Democrat in 1995 to vote for Bill Clinton to now, and said he often felt he was “an odd fit” for the party, seeing himself as more “practical” rather than “ideological.”
“I’ve been a Democrat my entire adult life,” Yang said, describing his decision to leave the party. “And yet, I’m confident that no longer being a Democrat is the right thing.”
In early September, sources told Politico that Yang was planning on launching a third party on October 5, coinciding with the release of his new book “Forward: Notes on the Future of Our Democracy.” According to a preview, Yang claims to “offer a series of solutions” to fix “twenty-first-century problems.”
Yang, a former businessman, gained prominence during his bid for president in the 2020 U.S. presidential election by advocating for a universal basic income, in which the government would give citizens $1,000 monthly. His presidential campaign outlasted other more well-known politicians, and he obtained the support of stars like comedian Dave Chappelle, actor John Leguizamo and Tesla founder Elon Musk, who dubbed themselves part of the “Yang Gang.” He dropped out after the New Hampshire primary, in which he came in eighth, following a disappointing sixth place showing in Iowa. He then announced his bid for New York City mayor in 2021, and while he held an early polling lead in the race, he ultimately finished fourth in the Democratic primary.
Andrew Yang to launch a third party (Politico)