Arbitrarily might our nation be better off if political parties did not exist. Political parties are said to be an essential part of creating balanced power, but have we not learned from history that notions of true bipartisanship in our government has been at best, an inglorious afterthought. If democracy is defined as a government by the people and for the people, one might argue that the existence of political parties only undermines the true meaning of its merit, which is impartiality. Today, in a nation like ours, one that is already so terribly divided and suffering from things like dissonance and the negative impacts of socioeconomic barriers, is it fair to say that political parties only divide us further, and consequently keeping potential voters from going to the polls.
If one considers presidential history, Presidents; Washington, Lincoln, F. Roosevelt, Johnson, and Reagan all made significant decisions that have dissented from political party positioning. Historians have widely lamented that our nation’s first president George Washington reviled the idea of political parties. And when our nation’s sixteenth President Abraham Lincoln was elected to office, politicians that were once his adversaries were assigned to the executive cabinet based on the premise that if not, the nation would otherwise be deprived of potentially great service. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, a democrat, also went against both the left and the right, as well as, the nation’s highest court to institute The New Deal in response to the socioeconomic fallout from The Great Depression (1929-1933).
Amid the turbulent 1960’s then President Lyndon B. Johnson, a staunch democrat from Texas, signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 facing opposition in congress from Southern Democrats who opposed the bill, which ultimately led to the longest running filibuster in Senate history. Two decades later, ignoring bipartisan opposition from both sides of the aisle, President Ronald Reagan signed the Social Security Reform Act of 1983, yet again showing the nation that a president can depart from a political party affiliation to do something believed to be for the greater good of society as a whole.
These great leaders put forth meritorious efforts to lead our nation by showing the rationality of personal merit within a democracy by being individuals apart from their political parties. If such is fact, then might there be truth in the belief that political parties only create a greater divide among voters, and would we not be better served to abolish political parties altogether.
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