In an average election cycle most people only know two names running for President, and more often than not those names are not the names of the candidates, but rather the name of the party those candidates have chosen to run under. Outside of the individuals who choose to eat, sleep, and breathe, electoral politics, despite the fact it is probably worse for one’s health than liquor, nicotine, and drugs combined, people are more than happy to be as ignorant as possible about politics and only show up every four years to pass back their ballot filled out in a party line vote, if the undercard is even filled out.
For a long time this sufficed. The two major parties in the United States held to certain guiding principles that were diametrically opposed in many ways. Many of us who have enjoyed the successes of the Buckley’s and Reagan’s of the conservative movement often cite “a choice, not an echo” or “bold colors rather than pale pastels” … and we are right to do so. But, being critically honest and with the benefit of hindsight over just the last 8 years to present, the Republican Party has stopped being a choice, or even an echo, for many traditional conservatives and small (l) libertarians. In fact, the GOP has largely become a repetition of the left, just with different classes as the targeted beneficiaries of the new benevolent totalitarian GOP.
This all began to change in earnest after the failures of the Bush admin to properly defend itself from the left on either domestic or foreign policy fronts.
McCain, the early rejection and revulsion from GOP organizations like the NRSC towards the Tea Party and conservative activists, the continued internecine violence and outward cowardice after historic election gains in the House, Mitt Romney, Mississippi …
These were all critical moments in the last 8 years of politics that lead to the ultimate death knell for GOP Fusionism and the lasting reign of the two party system. But the one that has brought me to believe that now is the time for a new major party is the nomination and outright embrace of Donald J. Trump as the GOP candidate for President of the United States.
Also, the nomination of Hillary Clinton as the Democratic candidate for President of the United States.
The two major parties have both decided to nominate individuals who are wholly unfit for the office they seek. I have no real desire to repeat the litany of offenses by either candidate, instead I will simply direct you to Erick Erickson’s rather compelling case for why he can no more vote for Hillary without hurting his ideological testimony, than he can vote Trump without hurting his Christian testimony.
In the grand scheme of things, a small percentage of the greater voting population recently picked the two most hated candidates in the history of elections and the rest of us are now wondering how we get out of this without some permanent damage.
With any tragedy there are goods that inevitably come about that may not have otherwise. This is no different.
There has been no time in my life when the rise a new major party, or two, seemed plausible … until now. Many people are just no longer represented by either major party. Conservatives are left without a home for our ideology, blue dog democrats have likewise been purged from the left, libertarians are even being taken for somewhat of a ride by their candidates as well.
I see a lot of demand for something better, something that reflects the values both parties have tossed off as cliched aftereffects of a bourgeoisie class of American’s they believe no longer exist, or deserve a voice. Unfortunately, there seems to be no real supply.
Is 2016 the cycle that will finally cause the demand to go so high, the division so great, that the supply will be an inevitability by 2020?
I, for one, certainly hope so. American’s deserve better choices with legitimate shots at the highest office in the land. Traditional Conservatives deserve this, Democrats of the Scoop Jackson flavor deserve this, the independents, the libertarians, and even the SJWs, Alt-Right, Commies, Socialists, and Nationalists deserve this.
Fusionism, for now, has run its course in American politics. Now we should shake loose the bonds that have defined the dividing lines of our politics for the last half century, or more, form new alliances according to the principles we hold dear and the values we wish to advance.
It is a new order now, the sooner you embrace that, the sooner you can help correct the supply/demand issue for representation in American Electoral Politics.