The lack of a Viable Third Party in the United States. Why?
Is polarization a factor?
AOC has recently said (or observed if that’s your choice of words) that "in any other country Joe Biden and I would not be in the same party." In all honesty, she is likely right about it, but what explains the truth behind it?
In spite of its size, population, and variety of views and interests among adult voters, the United States has featured a rather garbage two-party system with NO viable third party emerging. When I say “viable” I don’t mean a likely dominant party in actual governance, but one that is actually large enough and wins enough elections to remain influential in government.
An example of a viable third party would be the NDP in Canada, where it will always be a player at the federal level and is not absorbed into the Liberal Party. The United Kingdon also has Liberal Democrats exerting influence. However, unlike the NDP in Canada, it seems to be a middle-ground alternative for both disaffected Labor and Conservative voters in “swing” areas. A party having the same historical influence and characteristics which would appeal to the educated in the United States has not yet been discovered or even suggested. It could easily play the same role though in being the out to a disorderly two-party system.
Save your breath mentioning that the two countries mentioned also have first-past-the-post single-person electoral districts as well. I am well aware of the structural variables.
Now, I bring my opinion (or question) as to why this is. Is polarization the main reason for this in today’s politics? Is it that each of the two main parties sees the other as threatening and unacceptable that preventing the other side from coming to power is an overriding priority over advancing any particular policy?
Out of fear and loathing, then, an extra layer of a new party deterrence is psychologically enforced.
What other factors do you think could explain, in a country with so many identities, regional interests, and an extensive history of pragmatism in many time periods, the literal and shittiest lack of a viable additional party which could help moderate that same polarization?