In politics and religion, a moderate is an individual who is not extreme, partisan or radical.[1] In recent years, political moderates has gained traction as a buzzword.

Aristotle favoured conciliatory politics dominated by the centre rather than the extremes of great wealth and poverty or the special interests of oligarchs and tyrants.[2]

George Lakoff, author of The Political Mind, argues that moderates do not exist, because there is no definitive political ideology of the moderate.[3] Therefore, he believes it is impossible for a group of people to gather as 'moderates' as each would have different views. This means that for moderate political views to become mainstream, a big tent form of party would be required.

As a ‘moderate’ political position

Voters who describe themselves as centrist often mean that they are moderate in their political views, advocating neither extreme left-wing politics nor right-wing politics. In the US, it is claimed that 70% of the electorate occupy this position.[4] Voters may identify with moderation for a number of reasons: pragmatic, ideological or otherwise. It has even been suggested that individuals vote for ‘centrist’ parties for purely statistical reasons.[5]

See also


  1. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, 
  2. ^ Aristotle, Sir Ernest Barker, R. F. Stalley (1998), Politics, Oxford University Press, p. xxv, ISBN 9780192833938, 
  3. ^ YouTube. 
  4. ^ ‘America is 70% Centrist.’ The Centrist Party home page
  5. ^ Probabilistic Voting and the Importance of Centrist Ideologies in Democratic elections Enelow and Hinich, The Journal of Politics, 1984 Southern Political Science Association
  • Robert McCluer Calhoon (2008), Ideology and social psychology: extremism, moderation, and contradiction, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 9780521734165