Political institutions have the potential to uplift the common man because any citizen can become involved in aspects of politics in a number of areas, from supporting a cause which you consider important to putting together a petition to lobby Congress to working for your favorite candidate. In addition, involvement in politics is your duty, the least of which is to vote.
Political institutions have always represented the people with money and power first. People in power then take on issues that matter to common people, like abortion or immigration, to get them on their side and help them raise money and get votes. The common man is not uplifted in this struggle, but polarized. He fights against his own brother for a political party that does not even care about him.