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In the wake of Election 2000 and the Ralph Nader factor, this collection of original essays by leading political scientists examines the possibilities for and performance of minor parties in the American political system. Looking at the rise and fall of the Reform Party and the seeming upsurge in Green Party prospects, the authors present evidence and opinion about the viability of a multiparty system in the United States. New York party politics and congressional and state legislative elections add depth to our understanding of multiparty politics in action. A unique public opinion survey shows surprising variation in citizen's attitudes toward minor parties and multiparty politics nationwide. Will minor parties flourish or flounder in the 2004 election season? This volume offers a variety of views that every voter should consider.
Part 1 I Possibilities Chapter 2 1 Multiparty Politics in America: Possibilities and Performance Chapter 3 2 Two-Party Dominance and Minor Party Forays in American Politics Chapter 4 3 The Case for a Multiparty System Chapter 5 4 In Defense of the Two-Party System Chapter 6 5 Public Opinion and the American Party System: Possibilities for Multiparty Politics Part 7 II Performance Chapter 8 6 Running Against the Odds: Minor-Party Campaigns in Congressional and State Legislative Elections Chapter 9 7 The Rise and Decline of the Reform Party, 1992-2000 Chapter 10 8 Sharing the Spoils: Ralph Nader, the Green Party, and the Elections of 2000 Chapter 11 9 Multiparty Politics in New York Chapter 12 10 Barriers to Minor Party Success and Prospects for Change