Lake Stevens Journal - Your hometown newspaper since 1960

 

By Pam Stevens
Managing Editor 

Political parties should be abolished

 

September 11, 2012



Even after two weeks of political party conventions, speakers on both sides of the aisle have had their say, the media has analyzed and reanalyzed all that was said and folks have expressed themselves all over Facebook, we still have two more months until the Presidential elections are over.

I don’t know about you, but I am exhausted! I honestly don’t know how these politicians and their families keep up the fight day after day, year after year.

During these past weeks I have often wondered what the political process in the United States would be like if we abolished political parties and made candidates stand on their own ideas, values and personal history. Not their party’s beliefs.

No more left side or right side pulling candidates one-way or the other. No more parties “encouraging” their candidates to feel one way or another. The candidate would tell the public how they feel and how they would govern according to their beliefs, not that of a political party.

I understand that parties were formed because people tend to lean one way or the other but today it seems that while many of those lines are even further apart there are many ways those lines are blurred. There are people out there who are conservative liberals or liberal conservatives.

The other downside is that lesser recognized parties always get lost in the shuffle because it’s the “big two” that tend to bring out the money and the candidates.

I think that if voters had to pick a candidate instead of choosing a political party, many voters would make choices based on better research of the person.

I applaud Washington State for making a move in that direction with the primary vote ballots.

Only the two candidates with the most votes moves forward, it doesn’t matter if they are both from the same party. So far, most of those votes have included a candidate from the Republican and Democratic parties, thus making my point – voters tend to vote for their party, especially in primary elections before too much research is done.

You also have to give kudos to voters and candidates in other parties who recognized that they have little or no chance at winning an election but still plow through the process and speak for their beliefs.

Candidates can be pushed out by their respective parties if they don’t feel “their” candidate is voting the way they should. Parties can throw another candidate into the primary election ring to help push that same party’s candidate out.

Abolishing political parties may be a drastic step and it would literally take an act of Congress to make it happen, but it would certainly be a wake-up call for voters to ensure they really know whom they are voting for and what they represent.

It would also encourage candidates to express THEIR beliefs and not rely on those of the party.

 

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