I’d like to propose a simple plan to really change things in the US. I don’t really know if this is even an original idea, but here it goes…
Our current woes are due in large part to the two-party duopoly of the Democratic and Republican parties, and the people controlling the candidates within those parties that are allowed to be nominated for election. Third-party candidates are treated as fringe and irrelevant, because they believe strongly enough about their principles to not agree with anyone else (a similar parallel comes to mind with Linux distributions).
The only way to break this cycle is to actually get a third-party candidate elected. It doesn’t matter what party or really even what they believe in (see US Presidents, 1988-2008), provided they agree to a few things if elected:
- Choose a cabinet of members representing all of the other third parties that helped get said candidate elected
- Work furiously to change election laws that favor the current two-party system (this is probably naive)
- Do right by the people of this country
The goal would be to replicate this model across the congress and the senate throughout the US, to completely strip the two main political parties of their dominant positions, allowing legislation to pass that would eliminate the benefits of the two-party system. A final goal would be voting reform to follow a model like New Zealand where every vote counts. So how do we make this happen:
- Pick the candidate with the best chance of winning (Barr, Nader, Baldwin, Paul… at this point, I don’t care who, just get someone in there that will work to remove the two-party monopoly
- Have all other parties rally their supporters to get this candidate elected
Is this just an odd, quirky idea that’s failed before, or something so simple that it might actually work?