We are not limited to two Party’s.
The reason these two Party’s have more success than any of the others is because the others either embrace deal breaker level positions with most people or are so focused on an individual issue that they cannot gain adherence from serious voters who understand the long term consequences of elections and the broad way that all issues connect to one another.
The Democrat Party platform Party Platform | Democrats.org embraces Socialism/Communism almost entirely, those who believe these concepts are superior align with Demoncrat’s in spite of some of their members not being entirely “on board” with the Demoncrat Platform.
The Republican Party Platform http://www.gop.com/2008Platform/ embraces Market Based solutions and A Strict Constructionist position on the U.S. Constitution for the most part, those who embrace these concepts align themselves with the GOP in spite of the fact that some members are not entirely “on board” with the GOP Platform.
The “Platforms” are the best indicator of where the majority of the Party’s members stand philosophically.
Conservatism is still most at home in the GOP using this gauge, the Conservatives beat out the RINO’s each time the Platform is renewed (although they have made some inroads)
For a third Party to excel it would have to Capitalize on one of these two Parties unwillingness to honor their Platform because these two Platforms do a pretty good job of articulating the positions of most voters.
Third Parties fail to do this, they usually embrace elements that are attractive to many voters but they also ignore many issues voters feel strongly about or that are opposite of what voters think would benefit America. Also, most Americans understand (even in our public school environment) that Presidents are not “Kings” and Congress operates on a majority rule system, they know that choosing a Candidate from a Party that has very little support Nationally just means that their Candidate will have to caucus with one of the two other Party’s to accomplish anything.
The problem is not that “Both Parties don’t get it”, these two Platforms reveal that the two primary philosophies of governance that oppose one another and that represent the opinions of most Americans are pretty well outlined and covered in the GOP and Democrat Party Platforms.
Third Party’s succeed when one of the Party’s is home to a very popular philosophy but refuses to honor that philosophy in practice. That is how the GOP came into existence and that may be how the GOP ends up on the scrap heap of history.
The two primary economic concepts (Socialism and Market Capitalism) are in direct conflict with one another, the same is true for the ideas surrounding the proper role of government (Statist/Nanny State versus Rugged Individualism/self reliance). In order for a Party to survive it MUST represent one side of these debates or the other because they are in complete conflict with each other.
When one or both Parties decide to mix and match the concepts too much in an effort to glean the votes of those who cannot make up their mind where they stand (as opposed to convincing them with a compelling argument to the Parties position) then the Party’s core members get angry and will eventually leave if the condition persists.
We are ripe for a genuine Conservative Party to rise, there is a clear majority of Americans who consistently poll in support of most all of the Conservative positions, these same polls show very little respect for the GOP amongst a clear majority of Americans.
**If a particular Party Platform and most of that same Parties members hold positions that are also inline with a Majority of Americans opinions on most issues but that SAME Party is the lowest ranked in popularity it is because that Party is *IGNORING ITS PLATFORM AND BASE. ***
I understand why RINO’s reject this explanation, they are on the side that has very little luck when the Platform is drafted and they are the ones who find themselves in the minority from their fellow members and the public on most issues.
But I do not understand how anyone else cannot see this. Every election the GOP Candidate fights to convince America that he is more Conservative than he really is and every Demoncrat tries to convince America that he is not the Leftist that his Party and record would indicate.
Demoncrat’s embrace their base in how they govern while claiming at election time that they don’t.
Republican’s ignore their base when governing while claiming at election time that they are “one of us”.
We do not need to “get along” or “find common ground”.
We need to pick a side, make our case to America and let them choose what philosophy will best serve America going forward.
The GOP would win this in a landslide if they honored their base but so far they have refused to do that. If this condition continues, a 3rd Party with widespread support is not only very possible it is likely.
This new Party will not be a current Party that has yet to “catch fire” because the people who make up political party base members already know what they believe, they are looking to coalesce with enough others to make what they believe happen.
It is the 15 or so percent who drift between philosophical ideas depending on who they heard speak the last that are the potential members of existing “3rd Parties”. These Parties rarely place their leaders in a position to be challenged on what they believe so they can win the adherence of the weak minded, but major Party base members will never embrace concepts that cannot stand up to a legitimate challenge.
It is wrong to use our current “niche” 3rd Party’s as a basis for thinking no 3rd Party will ever rise to prominence, history shows us that sooner or later the Parties that embrace well one of these opposing concepts will thrive.