I would like to send a message out to a very specific group: Independent Voters.
How is that "Independence" working out for you? Are you enjoying sticking it to the two party system? You get all the pleasure of still having a Democrat or Republican in office but without all the benefit of being able to vote in a primary and thus having some impact on the internal party politics that are coming to define America.
I dislike the system. And I get your line of thinking to a degree, "Why affiliate yourself with a group you don't really believe in?" I can tell you why: Because you are a mitigating factor.
Registering with one of the two parties means that the candidates that run for the party nomination have to take you into account when campaigning. By not participating in the primary the only way to win is to cater to the hard line base, the people who will definitely show up. And they have to keep catering to them when in office or a real hardliner will run in the next primary (or even the general election) and pull them out of office.
See, you can't ever have a true 3rd party, there are too many issues with too many spectrums for a third party that exists between the extremes with a coherent ideology. And our system doesn't have preferential voting (where you rank candidates) and it doesn't have proportional representation in the legislature (where each percentage of the vote gets that percentage of the seats). The two extremes can only be mitigated by greater internal moderate challenges that have to be considered.
By sitting out the two party system, you are only taking your moderate thoughts out of the asylum. And in our system, the moderates are the doctors who treat the crazies, you have left the inmates as the only ones to run the place.
So let me ask you a great big favor, to all of the people out there registered to a third party, Independent, or Unaffiliated… Register for one of the two real parties. The ones that will actually win from time to time. And trust me on this, the parties will be less shit as a result of all of you joining them.
In time we can all push for a better system… it will never get here because it would require re-writing a constitution too many people like in spite of it being junk, but we can at least make things better in spite of that. Can’t we?
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