About the Book

Two Parties—or More?

Two Parties—or More?

The American Party System, Second Edition
August 2002
Trade Paperback · 168 Pages
$37.00 U.S. · $42.99 CAN · £24.99 U.K. · €26.99 E.U.
ISBN 9780813340319
Dilemmas in American Politics

 

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Description

Students of American government are faced with an enduring dilemma: Why two parties? Why has this system remained largely intact while around the world democracies support multiparty systems? Should our two-party system continue as we enter the new millennium? This newly revised and updated edition of Two Parties-Or More? answers these questions by placing the dilemma in the context of recent elections and the environment in which all parties must function. The text provides students with a historical overview of minor parties and their impact on politics. By focusing on Ross Perot's efforts in 1992 and 1996 and the difficulty the Reform party faced in 2000, Jesse Ventura's gubernatorial victory in Minnesota, and Ralph Nader's Green party campaign for the presidency in 2000, the text lays out the current dilemma regarding third parties and explores the extent and cause of the current dissatisfaction with the two major parties. The authors conclude with predictions about the future of third-party politics in the states and the nation. The text is enhanced with a glossary, discussion questions, and an appendix of important third parties in presidential elections and recent officeholders who were neither Democrats nor Republicans. The revised edition highlights the implications of recent successes (Angus King in Maine in 1994 and 1998, Ventura in Minnesota, Perot in 1992, and Nader in 2000) and failures (the Reform party in 2000 and fewer third party winners in the states) of third party efforts for the future of America's traditionally two-party system.

About the Authors

John F. Bibby is professor emeritus of political science at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee and the author of Politics, Parties, and Elections in America, Governing by Consent: An Introduction to American Politics, and the co-author of Party Organizations in American Politics. He was the 2001 recipient of the Samuel J. Eldersveld Lifetime Award from the Political Organizations and Parties Section of the American Political Science Association. In addition to being a specialist in the study of political parties, he has held leadership positions in national, state, and local party organizations. L. Sandy Maisel is William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Government and director of the Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement at Colby College. Former president of the New England Political Science Association and former chair of the Legislative Studies and the Political Organizations and Parties sections of the American Political Science Association, Maisel is the general editor of Political Parties and Elections in the United States: An Encyclopedia and of Jews in American Politics; he is editor of The Parties Respond: Changes in American Parties and Campaigning, now in its fourth edition with Westview, co-author of Parties and Elections in America, also now in its fourth edition, and author or co-author of dozens of journal articles and book chapters.