Archive for the ‘Two-party system’ Category

My Camera Editorial Advisory Board comment published on Oct. 19, 2008, in response to the Camera’s question: The third and final debate between two presidential candidates, Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama, is this week. National polls track voters’ preference between the two men, with Obama currently in the lead. Yet when Colorado voters head to the polls, there will be 16 candidates to choose from. What is your opinion about the current, de facto, two-party system?

I fault the media for the public not knowing much, if anything, about third-party candidates. I also fault the candidates for not using TV and print media to get their messages out to enrich the public discussions.

Nevertheless, I like the current two-party system. It gets legislation passed by a simple or two-thirds majority, though that is no small feat. When legislation doesn’t get produced or passed, leadership on a course of action is lacking, not the number of parties involved. Third parties have to build coalitions with one or both major parties anyway.

To clarify this point, consider a simple scenario of two children sharing a bedroom. At bedtime, one wants the door open. The other wants it closed. They work out an agreement that will work for them. Now, add one or more children to the bedroom with their choices. Coalitions and lobbying ensues. Coming to one of two conclusions simply takes more time and effort.

Obviously, many issues addressed by Congress or the President aren’t either-or questions. However, after discussions and debates, the choices come down to two — for or against.

*This title was not part of the Camera publication.

Source: Daily Camera

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