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Third Way is a Washington, D.C.-based "public policy "think tank founded in 2005.[1] The think tank develops policy ideas, conducts "public opinion research and hosts issue briefings. The organization has four policy divisions: Economics, "National Security, Clean Energy, and Social Policy & Politics. Third Way develops and advocates for policies that it says represent the "vital center".[2]

The think tank includes many Republican donors and Democratic officials.[3]

Much of the funding for Third Way comes from personal donations from its Board of Trustees, many of whom work or have worked in the finance sector.[4]



Third Way was founded in 2005 by "Jonathan Cowan, Matt Bennett,[5] Jim Kessler,[6] and Nancy Hale[7] in the wake of the 2004 election as a policy, messaging and strategy "idea center" and think tank. The organization was dedicated to understanding the wants, needs and expectations of self-described Moderate left leaning Americans, who comprise 44% of the voting public.["citation needed].

Areas of interest[edit]

Third Way has four major policy programs: the Economics Program[8] focuses on helping the "middle class in America in the midst of growing "global competition. The National Security Program[9] aims at issues of security and the US military. Third Way has also undertaken a program[10] on clean energy intended to influence policy decisions on reducing "carbon emissions. Finally, it has a Social Policy Program[11] to examine issues including equality, education, immigration and gun control.

Policy work[edit]

A Third Way sponsored a report written by "William Galston of the "Brookings Institution and Elaine Kamarck[12] of Harvard University's "Kennedy School entitled Change You Can Believe In Needs a Government You Can Trust.[13] The report analyzed Americans' trust in government and reported it was in serious decline and could present significant challenges to the "Obama administration's agenda.

Third Way developed the policies framed in "Spurring Weatherization Investments in Rural America", which was introduced by Representative "Jim Clyburn (D-South Carolina) and Senator "Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) as the Rural Energy Savings Program.[14]

Third Way argued for members of opposing parties to sit together at the President’s annual address in 2011 and 2012.[15]

Specific topics[edit]

Third Way has tried to work on the following policy issues:

  1. The economic benefits of "green energy. Since 2010, Third Way is "lobbying the creation of an alternative clean energy and climate agenda.
  2. Deficit reduction.[16] One example: a proposal to cut federal pensions was adopted by the Simpson-Bowles Deficit Commission and the House Republicans’ deficit package. The Grand Bargain - an over-arching tax and budget deal to reduce the deficit by cutting Social Security and Medicaid [17] is an issue they champion.[18]
  3. Third Way proposals to reform "Medicare, "Medicaid and "Social Security were included in White House debt talks and the congressional "Super Committee" deliberations.[19][20][21]
  4. The repeal of ""Don't ask, don't tell" and the "Defense of Marriage Act.
  5. Advocated for new trade accords with Korea, Colombia and Panama.
  6. Advocated for the "Trans-Pacific Partnership.
  7. Push anti-gun policies

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Shear, Michael D. (2011-02-09). "Political Groups Compete to Represent the Center". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ "Third Way - About Us". Retrieved November 9, 2014. 
  3. ^ Fang, Lee (December 3, 2013). "GOP Donors and K Street Fuel Third Way's Advice for the Democratic Party". The Nation. 
  4. ^ Isquith, Elias. "Third Way senior vice president admits majority of think tank’s funding comes from Wall Street." Salon. Retrieved September 5, 2017.
  5. ^ Bennett, Matt. "Matt Bennett, Senior Vice President for Public Affairs". Third Way Staff. Third Way. Retrieved November 9, 2014. 
  6. ^ Kessler, Jim. "Jim Kessler, Senior Vice President for Policy". Third Way. Retrieved November 9, 2014. 
  7. ^ Hale, Nancy. "Nancy Hale, Senior Vice President for Strategy & Leadership Development". Third Way. Retrieved November 9, 2014. 
  8. ^ Gerwin, Ed. "Programs - Economic Program". Third Way. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  9. ^ Way, Third. "Programs - National Security Program". Third Way. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  10. ^ McCraw, Kimble. "Programs - Clean Energy Program". Third Way. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  11. ^ Third Way  Missing or empty |title= ("help)
  12. ^ "The Arena: - Elaine C. Kamarck Bio". 2010-10-21. Retrieved 2012-11-07. 
  13. ^ "Change You Can Believe In Needs a Government You Can Trust" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  14. ^ "Jeff Merkley - Fighting for Oregon in the U.S. Senate: Home". 2010-03-10. Retrieved 2012-11-07. 
  15. ^ McDuffee, Allen (January 23, 2012). "State of the Union: Will Republicans and Democrats sit together?". Washington Post. Retrieved March 20, 2012. 
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^ "Democratic Policy Group Would Cut Social Security for Top Earners in U.S". Bloomberg. 
  20. ^
  21. ^ "Boomers and Entitlements: The Next Round". The New York Times. 2012-08-03. 

External links[edit]

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