Is the U.S. ready for a third party?
In many countries around the world, there are several political parties, but in the United States there are only two that are consistently competitive in elections
The first two political parties had their origins in the debate over the ratification of the Constitution–the Federalists and Antifederalists. Today, the Republican and Democratic Parties dominate electoral politics. Almost every federal or state-level elected official in the United States is either a Republican or Democrat.
Other parties exist, such as the Libertarian, Green, Peace and Freedom among others; but they have never had the numbers to carry an election. The very structure of U.S. elections would seem to discourage a third party. Essentially, candidates have to pick a team and they want to be on the winning team, the one with the numbers to win. A third party candidate is for all practical purposes the last kid left on the playground when the dodge-ball teams are picked. He or she may have great ideas but without support they will never come to fruition. What happens more often than not is a candidate from an opposing party will co-opt those great ideas leaving the third party candidate with nothing to run on.
Yet, the third party system is a persistent idea in American culture. One politically minded citizen has decided to do something about it. Sussy Kilpatrick of Ohio has formed the Silver Party. Named after statistician and demi-god of the 2012 election Nate Silver, the party hopes to be a viable alternative to independents who would rather not be affiliated with either the Republican or Democratic parties.
Nate Silver first gained national attention in 2008 with the accuracy of his November 2008 presidential election predictions — he correctly predicted the winner of 49 of the 50 states. In 2012, Silver was one of the most successful major forecasters of the presidential election. In the race between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, he correctly predicted the winner of all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The Silver Party mandate is simple: Governing through logic, reason, and math. It’s something neither Democrats nor Republicans have tried before. It just might have a chance. A growing number of Americans have grown disillusioned with the outright lying, spin and lack of coherent arguments in current election politics.
As of this report, Sussy is the only member of the Silver Party. She is attempting to raise funds and gain exposure through the sale of the Nate Silver pin-up calendar.
When asked if she thought the sale of the calendar would provide the funds she needs to launch the party she replied, “Are you kidding, Nate Silver is the thinking woman’s beefcake.”