The United States' Two-Party System

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A two-party system is a political system in which only two parties have a realistic opportunity to compete effectively for control. As a result, all, or nearly all, elected officials end up being a member in one of the two major parties. In a two-party system, one of the parties usually holds a majority in the legislature hence, being referred to as the majority party while the other party is the minority party. The United States of America is considered to be a two-party system. A two-party system emerged early in the history of the new Republic. Beginning with the Federalists and the Jeffersonian Republicans in the late 1780s, two major parties have dominated national politics, although which particular two parties has changed with the times and issues. During the nineteenth century, the Democrats and Republicans emerged as the two dominant parties in American politics. As the American party system evolved, many third parties emerged, but few of them remained in existence for very long. Today the Democrats and Republican still remain as the dominant parties. These two parties hav...

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