I note the two articles by Richard Winger of Ballot Access News posted in Independent Political Report on Jan. 9. Richard has been mentioned in previous posts here.
Ballot access is generally easy for the democrats and republicans, more complicated and difficult for third parties and independents. And election victory almost always goes to a democrat or a republican. Generally the higher the office the more rare the victory for third parties and independents in the USA. No third party or independent presidents elected in at least 100 years. Extremely few Representatives, Senators or Governors. State legislatores. Still few mayors, council, county officials etc.
All of these ballot qualified candidates and parties over at least the past 100 years and precious few victories. Why?
Actually questions about this are not new. Yet, candidates and parties keep doing the same things and only the democrats and republicans win. What is going on?
Is it simple numbers? There are not enough potential voters for certain candidates and parties to win. This would seem to apply to the Libertarians. According to The Libertarian Vote, about 13% of voters would consider voting Libertarian. This is not enough to win a general election or even a primary. Progressives/leftists have won in other countries in very close elections. Rightists have won in other countries also. But not in the USA.
The closest a third party has come to victory in the USA in the past 100 years was Teddy Roosevelt’s Progressive party in 1912. In that race a well known candidate, former President Roosevelt, hastily formed a third party, the Progressive party and made the race a three way thereby lowering the threshold percentage of the vote needed to win. To do this DELIBERATELY would be to adopt that strategy.
I am not aware of any deliberate attempt to create a three way race by any candidate or party. That is, to try this strategy. Any three way race that has developed e.g. Clinton/Bush/Perot was coincidental. Unfortunately Perot was a right/centrist reactionary of some sort. Certainly not a progressive or libertarian.
We need to DELIBERATELY devise a strategy based on the 1912 TR model. Unfortunately we do not have a living ex-President who is a progressive or libertarian. Catch-22? Perhaps not. Perhaps if enough of the other 1912 ingredients are put together, we can compensate for that.
What was NOT put together in 1912 that may very well have made all the difference in victory and loss was the possible addition of Woodrow Wilson, a progressive Democrat, to the Roosevelt ticket. That would have left the democratic party with a lesser candidate and brought many progressive voters FROM the democrats TO the Progressive party.
A Wilson/Roosevelt ticket would have been a fusion ticket.