It is time for a third party to rise out of the ossified tribal sensibility of our election process and emerge as an alternative. We need a third party.
The United States has a tradition of a two-party system, but it is time for a third party to rise out of the ossified tribal sensibility of our current election process.
By tribal, I mean instead of voting by where candidates stand on the issues, people vote “how they’ve always voted” or vote based on what voting mentality they were nurtured with: It doesn’t matter if you’re pro-choice and pro-gay marriage, you’re a Republican! You’re a Democrat, but you’re anti-gun control because that’s just part of your culture. Social class, age, religion, and ethnicity are also factors but with the current lack of distinction on where each party comes down on the issues, a third party can and should emerge as a refreshing alternative for those who are weary of the current gridlock we see Washington. A real political opposition would also increase voter turnout by turning around public apathy and overall cynicism in our political system.
Although there are a growing percentage of voters that identify themselves as independent, there is no real established third party to represent them. Instead, pollsters label independents as votes that are “up for grabs.” But does it make sense that even with a recent Gallup poll showing 42% of Americans identifying as independent of the Republican and Democratic Party, there is no political party to call their own? This is true even though politically independent Americans outnumber those claiming to be either Democrat or Republican combined.
Why We Need a Third Party
With the chance of another Bush/Clinton face off in the next general election, people are rightly warning about the establishment of permanent political dynasties. Is that the kind of political tradition we want for our country? When we promote democratic ideals to other parts of the world, it is imperative that we practice democracy to the fullest extent possible here at home.
- Instant runoff voting and universal voter registration should be supported, while gerrymandering must come to an end.
- Democratize donations by curbing big donors and powerful lobbying groups that only represent the few, and show greater emphasis on smaller donations that come from the multitude.
- Promote policies that provide challengers with a more level playing field when running against incumbents.
- Campaign finance reform is essential, and true election reform2 is the only way towards a more open and fair democracy.
- And finally, we need a third party .
Some useful links from the article:
Also see our entire section on third parties called Third Party Central where you can find information on every small party in the country.