The existence of the ideal moderate is disputed because of a lack of a moderate political ideology. Many people claim to be moderate because of a lack of adherence with the more radical sides of the political or religious spectrum, rather than advocating a specific stance.
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.
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. Gallup polling has shown American voters identifying themselves as moderate between 35–38% of the time over the last 20 years. 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.