Have you ever heard of the Green Party? I feel like Americans sometimes get stuck within the two party system, when there are alternatives that, if the public knew about, could actually challenge the two major parties.
Here is a link to the Green Party website. http://www.gp.org/index.php
What do you think of the Green Party? Also, if you happen to be fond of another party that isn't mainstream, what is it, and why do you support them?
I believe that our two-party system should not exclude third, and even fourth party candidates from launching viable campaigns. Also, Presidential debates should not be limited to just the Republican and Democratic Presidential candidates. We need to start acting like a real democracy.
I am unhappy with the two party system and will check out the Green Party website with great interest and an open mind. Sooner28, have you read George Washington's farewell address? Here's a link. http://www.earlyamerica.com/earlyameric … text.html. He warned against the two-party system, among other things.
Thanks for the link Silva! No I haven't read it. I definitely will though.
We may have peaked in sheer quality with our very first president. Anti-partisan, so suspicious of government power that he was reluctant to even hold the reins of government leadership himself, which oddly enough made him the best possible kind of leader. Someone once suggested that Washington be named the king of the United States; Washington was so appalled by the idea that he threatened to execute him for treason.
In other news, the page that link points to seems to be non-existent.
Here's another link; hope it works better. Don't know what happened with the first one.
http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Washingto … _Address#1
There are two problems that I think get in the way of third parties.
1. The only way a third-party candidate can win is if a lot of people can be convinced to take a chance on an unconventional choice at once.
2. If you vote for a third-party candidate and they lose it feels like all you did was help out the main party candidate you disagree with the most.
I often wonder if it would help politics at large to ban political parties entirely. I'm sick of only having two favors to choose from too, but I feel like I can't order anything else unless I can feel pretty confident that the plurality of Americans will order the same thing.
I think you're correct to point out the flaws under the current system. I personally like proportional representation, where seats are allocated based on the percentage of votes people give to a particular party. This wouldn't work with a presidential election, but in local elections I think it could have a major impact.
I also am in favor of easing restrictions on alternative parties' access to ballots. I understand that we wouldn't want a situation where any person can run, otherwise we would end up with 60 or 70 candidates, most of which were not qualified to hold public office. But what if we have five or six choices for President, all of which are allowed to participate in the formal debates? I think that could make inroads in changing the domination of the Republican/Democrat coalition to keep out all alternative parties.
Here in the UK prime ministers are elected by the party in office by PR, but we aren't allowed to elect our representatives by PR.
We use the first past the post system which means that we seldom if ever get MPs elected with a majority and therefore never get governments that are elected by the majority either.
We end up with the elected party having about 35-40% of the vote but often a considerably higher percentage of seats and then, say, the third party which may have 50% of the votes that the party in government has but only 10% of the seats.
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