Did you know that there are over 30 people running for president in this election? Of course, you didn’t, because all you hear about is the Democrats and Republicans.
Hawaii's People Recognize Voting as a Matter of Survival
Unlike other multi-party democracies, we have a two-party system in the United States—the Democrats, a centrist party, and the Republicans, a conservative party.
We do have other parties, like the Greens, the Libertarians, even Communist, and Socialist parties, but there are so small they can’t even get a seat in Congress.
Why? One issue is just getting get on the ballot. We have 50 different rules in 50 different states on how you can even get in the running.
Another is money in politics. You have to raise a lot of money for the media to take you seriously, and if the media doesn’t cover you, your numbers don’t rise in the polls, and so you don’t get into the debates. It’s a vicious cycle.
So what happens is that third parties are considered “spoilers” like the Green Party being accused of taking votes from the Democrats and giving the victory to the Republicans. But the Greens shouldn’t be blamed for the system, it’s the system that’s the problem.
And in fact, all polls show that a majority of Americans want effective third parties. A recent poll showed that they wanted a “fundamental change in the structure and design of the American Government.”
Wouldn’t that be nice? It won’t happen in this election, but there is a strong Movement for a Peoples Party and after this election, we might just see what the American people want: a strong third party and a multi-party system.