The Two-Party System and the Death of the Republic

Back in May, I noted that the Tax Day Tea Party protests had led to the creation of an independent slate of candidates in Toledo, Ohio: Teamwork Toledo. In the Toledo Free Press, Tim Higgins of Just Blowing Smoke provides us with something of an update on the local political scene in a piece arguing that the reigning two-party system is at odds with the continued existence of the republic: Death of the Republic?:
Government power no longer seems to derive from the great body of the people directly or indirectly, but instead from the two major political parties. The Democratic and Republican parties have made politics an all but private game no one else gets to play . . . When they are not robbing Peter to pay Paul, they are robbing Peter and Paul to pay themselves . . .

Is there a light at the end of this tunnel? Certainly here in Toledo, we are seeing a plethora of qualified candidates enter the local political arena without party affiliation. Fed up with the shenanigans on both sides of the aisle, we note that two of the five candidates for mayor are running as Independents. A number of those running for the “at large” city council seats appear to be Independent as well, including the five running under the “Teamwork Toledo” banner. Perhaps this is a hopeful design for the days to come, and that we can reject those of the “party” in favor of those best able to serve.

The Democrats and Republicans were not always the parties in power in this country. Since its founding, we have seen Democratic-Republicans, Federalists, Whigs and my personal favorite, the American Party (known at the time as the “know-nothings’). There is nothing in the Constitution justifying the continued existence of these two current players. There are, however, an increasing number of laws created by these two jealous titans to insure their continued preeminence. It is my belief that some new equilibrium is not only desired, but necessary if we are to avoid the death of the republic.

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