In our current political climate, the prevalence of third party candidates still continues, despite the system making it near impossible for them to be elected. In the House of Congress, third party candidates rarely enter in the race, as no more than two candidates have occupied a seat since World War II (enter citation). The ability for two party system to continue is done in part by the presidential winner take all and the awarding of Congress seats.
French sociologist Maurice Duverger theorized in the 1950s that this kind of setup leads to what is effectively a two-party system. “Duverger’s law” states that third parties can’t compete because there is no prize for winning, for example, 15 or even 25 percent of the vote. This leads voters to choose candidates who are most likely to win, and it leads the parties to try to broaden their appeal to half of the electorate — and ideally more. When voters favor a party’s political ideals but have a choice between two candidates who both support those principles, that party will lose the election because those candidates will split the votes, allowing the other party to win with a plurality.
The United States, for example, allows each state to determine how a presidential candidate gets...
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... election, when he drew nearly 19 percent of the vote and helped deliver Democrat Bill Clinton a landslide win over incumbent Republican President George H. W. Bush.
As a result, politics in the U.S. is very restricted, with voters liable to apathy in the face of such limited choices. The winner-takes-all system is less democratic than systems of proportional representation, since the interests of those citizens who voted for a non-winning candidate will not be represented in government. Those in favor of the two-party electoral system in the U.S. point out that it fosters stability in government, and encourages both parties to moderate their views in order to appeal to the middle ground. They also suggest that voters might benefit from the ease of simply selecting between one candidate or the other, which is popularly known as voting for the "lesser of two evils."
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