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Editorial: Political migraine

Two party system has become a burden on U.S.

The New Hampshire

Published: Monday, October 29, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 16:02

As this presidential race nears its close and Election Day is just a week away, many Americans are ready to breathe a sigh of relief. For every fanatic supporter of President Barack Obama or Mitt Romney, there is a citizen who is weary from the constant barrage of TV and radio advertisements, the debates that don’t answer any questions and the endless political chatter on cable news. 

So what is it that has caused following politics to become such a headache for many people? It is the structure of a two-party system that has allowed for politicians to become so entrenched on one side or the other that a candidate with an independent viewpoint is often left by the wayside. Democrats and Republicans too often pander to their party bases rather than promoting original ideas. Americans are left to subscribe to one party’s set of ideals or the other. 

The problem shines through in debates, where both candidates often dodged questions. Both would instead criticize the other’s policies or be careful to toe the party line, using responses recycled from their campaign commercials. 

The focus after the debate was more on who had the better one-liner instead of who offered more substantial solutions to America’s problems. 

The current two-party system in the United States took shape after World War I, when the Democratic party was viewed as the party that represented people and the labor movement, while the Republicans were seen as the party of the rich. Those labels still exist today, more or less, although it is clearly more complex than that. But both parties seem more interested in serving their own interests – and the interests of their donors – than in serving the interests of the American people. 

The American political system is not broken. But the two-party system has made it difficult for candidates to break away from political agendas and try to solve the problems in this country. If voters can break away from these agendas themselves and demand more accountability from politicians, then perhaps politics will become less of a burden on the minds of the American people.

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