To what extent is it fair to say that the USA has a two party system? (45 marks)
A two party system can be defined as one in which two major parties regularly win at least 80% of the popular vote in the general elections, regularly win at least 90% of the seats in the legislature and alternately control the executive branch of the government.
Tradition is very important for most US citizens and because of this the once established human institutions are likely to become self-perpetuating. So it has been with the two-party system. The very fact that the nation began with a ...view middle of the document...
From 1968 to 2012, the combined Democrat and Republican vote has ranged from 86% to 99%, which means that third-party support is shallow and have an unimaginable chance of winning all votes in the Electoral College. They only pick up a fraction of the vote in almost every state but under a winner-takes-all system they receive no reward at all.
Much of American election law is purposely written to discourage non-major party candidates. Republicans and Democrats regularly act in a bipartisan way in this matter. That is, the two major parties find common ground and work together here. Many Americans argue this system is essential as they can handle it with ease and it brings stability, as multiparty systems are not firmly established.
Thirdly, American ideological consensus
On the other hand,
-States virtually one-party
It can be argued that the US has essentially a one-party system this is due to
Republicans and Democrats… to even suggest that they may be the same thing seems absurd to some, invoking strong debate or personal attacks by others. It’s “Us versus Them” for the political landscape and future of the country, right?
But if you look at the actions of both parties, the actual policies and voting records, the wide dividing line between the parties becomes narrow and blurred.