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No Basis for “Third Party” Envy

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Many Americans watched recent elections in Britain with envy because so many parties competed for power. The Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats, Scottish National Party, UK Independence Party and the Greens all competed for seats in Parliament.

But the results meant an inconclusive election with no clear mandate, producing a shaky government with less strength to handle pressing problems. A similar result afflicted Israel in recent elections; with votes split among six parties, Prime Minister Netanyahu has struggled to put together a viable government, despite the fact that he received far more votes than his principal challenger.

Those who yearn for new American “Third Parties” should ponder these results. We are fortunate that our two-party system remains vital, offering voters a clear choice between increasingly liberal Democrats and more conservative Republicans. The emergence of additional factions on the fringe would only fragment voting and produce the frustrating and inconclusive results that have hurt two of our closest allies.

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