From the recent government shutdown to strict partisan votes on taxes and healthcare, official Washington lurches from one fight to the next, with no end in sight.
But the American public is not as polarized as the pundits say.
While elected Republicans and Democrats appeal to their base, and are more divided than ever, the electorate has not changed dramatically in recent years. According to Pew Research and other pollsters, moderate independents outnumber either liberal Democrats or conservative Republicans.
Stanford University political scientist Morris Fiorina confronts the widespread assumption that voters are neatly split into rival camps, and argues that neither party can hold a majority for more than a few years. His new book is "Unstable Majorities: Polarization, Party Sorting and Political Stalemate."
We discuss solutions, including open primaries, weekend voting, easier voter registration and independent redistricting-- all designed to encourage citizen involvement in the political system.