A two-party political system is one where there are two political groups vying to dominate the government. There are three political system types: One-party, Two-party and Multi-party and in the United States, two parties seek to reach out to the electorate. These are the Republicans and the Democrats. However, there are contentions on the effectiveness of this political system. Here are the views of opposing groups.
List of Pros of Two-Party System
1. Broad Political Party Philosophy
Supporters of this party system posit since there are only two parties to choose from, voters will be able understand the political philosophies of parties. The electorate will have an easier time to make decisions and a broader perspective in understanding the views of each party.
2. Political Participation and Stability
Advocates for this type of political party system believe that this promotes centrism, a political position where balance in social equality and hierarchy is encourage and accepted in certain degrees. Consequently, political parties are motivated to focus on finding common ideologies that will be beneficial to the electorate majority. This will not only lead to political stability but also to economic growth in the future. This stability is achieved through the acceptance of different views and interests which will have a positive impact on political decisions. Additionally, having a two-party political system gives its citizens the freedom to choose the political leaders they want to be seated in government. People are also allowed to express their political views and speak their minds, a practice not enjoyed by the citizens of countries with one-party systems where the people are basically not allowed to participate in government.
3. Government Stability
Political trends, that is, short-term ones, can happen and a two-party system mitigates the chances of these trends to occur. This, in turn, stabilizes the government because there is more unity and the leaders and members of the parties remain intact. Even if the people do not agree with some candidates on certain political issues, these voters know that these candidates have other better issues they can support. With not having to worry about losing the trust of the electorate, leaders can concentrate more on other important policies, long-term.
List of Cons of Two-Party Systems
1. Debate Limitations
Since there are only two groups to look at political issues, critics say that this also means there will be limited number of debates and participants, for that matter. Major issues may be tackled but other important ones might be overlooked or set aside.
2. Limited Choices
In a two-party political system, there is sometimes a third party. However, candidates from this party rarely wins, thus, the electorate is left with only two parties to choose from.
3. Partisan Encouragement
Critics argue that coalition, which is typical of a multi-party political system, is not possible in a party where there are only two political groups. Instead, partisanship is what might be encouraged since the majority group will not work with the minority.
It is important to know the pros and cons of any political system so the voters can discern if this is really what a country needs.
Crystal Lombardo is a contributing editor for Vision Launch. Crystal is a seasoned writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience. She has been an editor of three popular blogs that each have had over 500,000 monthly readers.