As the US election hots up voters in real terms have little choice as to who will represent them. For many it will be a vote for whoever they feel is the least terrible. Voting for the lesser of the two evils is not ideal but so many times in the West it is all we have.
The UK had two main parties for years with at least one other main contender and several smaller political parties. Certainly this at times led to loony tunes standing and some detracting for the serious business of an election. The Monster Raving Loony Party led by one time pop singer Screaming Lord Sutch gathered a resaonable following down the years but never enough to challenge the main players. These days there are parties such as UKIP and BNP that do win seats. Whether their political ambitions will ever be reached is hard to predict. In the case of the racist and fascist BMNP we hope not.
Each candidate in the UK has to pay a fee to stand for election. The £500 deposit is lost unless you win enough votes. Poll less than a declared number of votes and you are £500 out of pocket. Political parties of course spend a great deal more when they put forward candidates for election. There are advertising costs and so much more. You get the idea though.
One of the problems with "other" parties is that to vote for a minority party can feel like the waste of a vote. It can mean that the person who you consider "the lesser of the evils" does not secure enough votes to win. This is why so many times even with choice many voters stick with the tried and tested two main parties.
In the UK 2010 election many voters took a chance and voted with their hearts. This action inflated the vote of the Liberal Democrats but not enough to form a government on their own. Instead none of the now three main parties had a majority. The Lib Dems joined forces with the Conservatives to form what many call the "Condems". Voters who were disillusioned with Labour ended up in effect helping the Tories come to power.
Now you can argue that the Lib Dems have helped rein in the most extreme Tory MPs and policies but that does not really help. By throwing their hand in with the Tories they have alienated their voters. They now are blamed each time the Tories hit people hard. After all if the Lib Dems were not propping up the Tories the Conservatives would not be in office.
So back to the US election. Unless you are an American it may surprise you to hear that there are more politics going on in the USA than the GOP, Democrats, Romney and Obama. Certainly there is little if any media coverage.
In the USA there is at least a Libertarian Party plus a Green, Reform and a Constitution party and yes there are debates other than those between Romney and Obama. The problem is that the mainstream media of the US, the UK and other countries simply ignores these Presidential hopefuls.
It is easy to see why it would take a lot for voters to move away from the two main parties but if they want real change that could be what they have to do. Any such change starts small. The impact on this election would not be monumental. However as support grew others would follow. It simply needs people to think outside of the box. To vote with their heads and their hearts.
It could be risky. As we have said in the UK this ultimately backfired on disillusioned Labour voters who took a chance on the Lib Dems. They may as well have voted Conservative in the first place.
You have to ask yourself though why the third parties in the USA are getting little air play. The main reason has to be money. The US election appears to be about money from start to finish. Could it also be to weaken their chances of election? Perhaps big business in the USA is ultimately pulling the election strings?