The U.S. is one of only a few countries in the world to have just two major political parties to represent everyone in the country. This has resulted in gridlock in our Congress which is causing the U.S. to fall behind in so many areas. According to the World Happiness Report and the Social Progress Index, our overall quality of life is rapidly getting worse compared to that in many other first world countries.
For example, because of our two-party system we pay twice what other first world countries pay for health care, or over $5,000 more per person per year. Meanwhile very little is being done to stop climate change which is burning up, drying up, or flooding out our country, depending on where you live. And our national debt is over $30 trillion and growing with no end in sight, along with our many other problems like runaway welfare costs and crime.
According to a recent Gallup poll, only 28 percent of Americans consider themselves Democrats, 24 percent consider themselves Republicans, but 46 percent consider themselves Independents, nearly half of the people in our country. The number of Independents is near an all-time high because people are so unhappy with the direction that our two major political parties are taking the U.S. in.
Even though Independents are a mixture of conservatives, moderates, and liberals, the vast majority no doubt lean towards the center of the ideological spectrum. Moderates, moderate conservatives, and moderate liberals have little to no say how our country is being run. This is unfortunate because we make decisions based on facts and science-based logic and because of this, we do things that make sense. We believe in balance, moderation, and are open to all options.
So how did we end up with just two parties? A lot has to do with the system of government that our Founding Fathers set up in order to get a bunch of independent colonies to agree to form a union. Today the problem is that we have a paradigm among many Americans that we only need two political parties because that is the way it has always been. We need to break that paradigm.
We now have an election coming up where the change of a few seats between parties in Congress could cause a huge shift in policy. This is not the way things should work. Policy should be based on what the majority of Americans want; in other words, the will of the people. And it is Independents who would decide, if we had a voice in our government.
Having just two major political parties is like going into an ice cream shop and finding out that they only offer two flavors of ice cream – chocolate and vanilla. And no mixing is allowed. It’s no wonder that we are having the problems that we are having in the U.S. As simple as it sounds, the formation of a third major centrist political party is the only way to fix all of the problems that our country is experiencing.
Moderates and Independents need to take back their share of control in our government. After all, the Founding Fathers were moderates and our country has thrived as a moderate democracy for over 240 years. But the U.S. is being pushed towards extremism. Based on recent polling data, over 60 percent of Americans and over 70 percent of millennials agree that we need a third major centrist political party. We need a party to represent Independents, moderate conservatives, moderate liberals, the middle class, and millennials with specific policy goals.
Such a party is coming. Hopefully we are not too late.