Kristen Cassels March 8, 2012

I feel as though political parties are vital institutions that help shape political movements. Political parties bring organization, unity, promotion, and institution to our voting structure. Without the candidates being narrowed down by the infrastructures of political parties, I feel as though our entire voting system would be a chaotic mess. Political parties are important for the American people because they represent different views of the people. The parties can provide clarity on opinions and views. They can assist a body of people with helping shape a government that stand for what they believe in. Parties also represent the broad values or goals stated in their party platforms In the same sense I believe that political parties can be harmful. Especially when the group that you are affiliated with is not addressing issues that are important to you. Most American’s choose to vote with their party affiliation no matter what the topics are. While taking stands on controversial issues such as abortion, prayer in school and affirmative action, the major political parties also make concerted efforts to be inclusive. The bigger the party's following, the greater the number of voters that support the party and the greater the number of party members that will win on Election Day. I personally feel that it would be impossible to have a democracy without structures that have been created and withheld by political parties. The competition between each party is one of the greatest catalysts for change in American politics. My one major complaint without current political party structure, is that it is untimely only a two-party structure. The two-party system discourages an actual representative democracy by limiting the pool of possible and plausible candidates. Of course there are third parties, but how often do they win? The Republicans and Democrats do not invite them to their debates this thereby helps them hold all of the power. In most cases the third parties are generally ignored. In my opinion, They are more regarded as distractions to help other parties win. In conclusion, while I feel that political parties are vital for keeping our voting structure organized and progressive. I also feel as though there

should be more attention placed on other political parties and that we should look at voting outside of democrat and republican.

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