By: Briana McDonald
Bernie Sanders has been under pressure from the far left lately to form a third political party, a stance that has caused controversy among more moderate liberals. Centrist left leaders hold that a new party may hurt the progressive cause more than promote it. And they’re right; a new third party is just an awful idea. Who needs a party that represents their views when they could just choose between two political parties that reject everything they stand for? Who needs a candidate they feel enthusiastic about voting for when they could rush to the ballots with a sinking feeling in their hearts? Who needs a government by and for the people when they could have a government run by elites who don’t care about their wants or needs?
Back in the 18-whatevers, people became disillusioned with the two primary political parties. Transportation was privately owned; taxes were too high but somehow not high enough; senators were being appointed by state legislature; corruption was rampant. The horror! As a result, one of those old white dudes started a party called the Populist Party, also known as the People’s Party. It called for bank and monopoly reform, a lowering of transport tax for farmers, direct election of senators, and a host of other disgusting, socialist ideals. And, get this: the Democratic party thought that some of these were actually a good idea. The Democrats adopted these ideals and made them part of the platform, edging them a bit further to the left, and the Populist Party slowly faded out of power…
Which is inevitably what would happen to a third party headed by Bernie Sanders anyway! Visualize what our country would be like if Socialist Sanders clawed his way into the Democratic party. The price of college would decrease; imagine all those educated Americans running around getting jobs – terrifying. Women might get paid justly for the work they do. (We could even get to directly elect our President.) I’m shaking in my boots.