Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Most Americans want a third political party – with a predictably bad twist

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The Hill 2010 Midterm Election Poll

Some good news: A new The Hill poll reveals that a majority of potential voters would like to see a viable third political party as an alternative to the forever bickering and useless Republican and Democrat fronts the US is currently stuck with:

Fifty-four percent of respondents in The Hill 2010 Midterm Election Poll said they’d like an alternative to the Democrats and Republicans.

That number rose to 67 percent for self-identified independents. But even a plurality in the established parties — 49 percent of Democrats and 46 percent of Republicans — said they’d like another choice.


The Hill’s poll was conducted by Penn Schoen Berland, which surveyed 4,047 likely voters in 10 open districts. The overall sample has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.5 percent.

It’s not quite the ideal solution to the problem, which would be to disband any and all political parties such as they are altogether and constitute Congress of nothing more than single-minded independents who vote along whatever the best wishes of their electorates may be. This would drastically increase unification of the country, both amongst the populace (by getting rid of the insufferable party divides) and between the people and the government. But, I guess for the meanwhile, introducing a third party – or even talking about how much people want a third party – will suffice. I’m not sure about the constitutional ramifications of splitting Congress into thirds, but then again, the Constitution is being altered all the time as society progresses.

The bad news, though, is that you can pretty much guess who a scary number of people think that elusive third party should be:

The rise of the Tea Party movement — a mishmash of disparate organizations under one umbrella — serves as one of the strongest signals that the public is dissatisfied with Democratic and Republican government. But asked if they thought the Tea Party should be the new third party, voters divided. More than two-thirds of Democrats and 42 percent of independents said no. But 55 percent of Republicans said yes, which is perhaps a sign of dissatisfaction among rank-and-file GOPers, and also an acknowledgement that the Tea Party is fueling what appears to be a Republican wave this cycle.

While it’s reassuring to hear that a majority (albeit by a small margin) of people don’t think that the Tea Party and its knuckle-dragging, bullshit-spewing sycophants is the third entity they desire, the idea of teabaggers taking over Congress and an even larger percentage of the population is a horrifying one. We already have utter nuts like Christine O’Donnell, Carl Paladino and Michele Bachmann to deal with, and now more than ever with the midterms rushing towards us. The idea that they could become the norm would probably be enough to keep me awake at night. (If I weren’t safely in Canada, anyway. Here, we just have ineffectual clowns in the government, rather than outright assholes. Mostly.)

But, hey, progress is progress.

(via @todayspolitics)