The Instigator
kartur
Pro (for)
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The Contender
JackFritschy
Con (against)
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The United States' two-party political system is detrimental to the well-being of Americans.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/10/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 702 times Debate No: 42026
Debate Rounds (3)
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kartur

Pro

From Wikipedia's page on two-party systems:

Two-party systems have been criticized for downplaying alternative views,[3][4] being less competitive,[7] encouraging voter apathy since there is a perception of fewer choices,[3] and putting a damper on debate[4] within a nation. In a proportional representation system, lesser parties can moderate policy since they are not usually eliminated from government.[3] One analyst suggested the two-party approach may not promote inter-party compromise but may encourage partisanship.[4] In The Tyranny of the Two"party system, Lisa Jane Disch criticizes two-party systems for failing to provide enough options since only two choices are permitted on the ballot. She wrote:

Herein lies the central tension of the two"party doctrine. It identifies popular sovereignty with choice, and then limits choice to one party or the other. If there is any truth to Schattschneider's analogy between elections and markets, America's faith in the two"party system begs the following question: Why do voters accept as the ultimate in political freedom a binary option they would surely protest as consumers? ... This is the tyranny of the two"party system, the construct that persuades United States citizens to accept two"party contests as a condition of electoral democracy.

"Lisa Jane Disch, 2002[35]

There have been arguments that the winner-take-all mechanism discourages independent or third-party candidates from running for office or promulgating their views.[7][36] Ross Perot's former campaign manager wrote that the problem with having only two parties is that the nation loses "the ability for things to bubble up from the body politic and give voice to things that aren"t being voiced by the major parties."[28] One analyst suggested that parliamentary systems, which typically are multi-party in nature, lead to a better "centralization of policy expertise" in government.[37] Multi-party governments permit wider and more diverse viewpoints in government, and encourage dominant parties to make deals with weaker parties to form winning coalitions.[38] While there is considerable debate about the relative merits of a constitutional arrangement such as that of the United States versus a parliamentary arrangement such as Britain, analysts have noted that most democracies around the world have chosen the British multi-party model.[38] Analyst Chris Weigant of the Huffington Post wrote that "the parliamentary system is inherently much more open to minority parties getting much better representation than third parties do in the American system."[38] After an election in which the party changes, there can be a "polar shift in policy-making" when voters react to changes.[3]
JackFritschy

Con

your arguments are valid but multiparty system is not the answer. the two party system allows the left and the riht to come together for a common cause. in the first past the post system, people will natural narow things down to a few parties. In elections, third parties can spilt the vote and create bad results. In america, the left has a great more party unity then the right. The right would probably fracture into neocon and libertarian factions and the left would win easily. Using the primary system, the right gets to pick between a moderate and a libertarian and then they unite behind the winner. Otherwise, it would be possible for dems to win even in states like texas. The real problem is the party leadership on both sides. They control the primaries and give us the lack of varation we see. Libertarians in both parties are usually suppressed. Big bussiness has been going after libertarians in the republican party all year in a atempt to purge the party of people against their agenda. Dems have simmiler problems, they have a lot more unity, but they are under total control of party leadership. i would say that the two party system lets more peoples voice be heard then a multi party system because multi parties really only work with prop representation which only benifits party leadership because they pick the represenitives. it is possible for one political faction to take over an established party. Prime example is the populist in 1896. The populist party ran a canidate for presidant with little success. Realizing they would have to use one of the two parties, they staged a takeover of the democratic party and fielded a populist canidate who came alot closer to winning. eventually woodrow wilson would win with populist ideas 16 years later.
Debate Round No. 1
kartur

Pro

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JackFritschy

Con

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Debate Round No. 2
kartur

Pro

kartur forfeited this round.
JackFritschy

Con

I would say that the two party system helps the voices of minor political movements be heard. The far left in the 60s would never have gained the level of power that it did without the democratic party as a vessel. Same with the tea party. It allows more minor elements to gain power in certain areas by needing only the majority of their own party to support them to get nominated. Then they have the whole party and may when the general election.
Debate Round No. 3
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