What If America Had Twelve Political Parties? (with Quiz)

What if America had twelve parties? I’ve wrote a lot about how we can achieve that, but what would actually happen if we succeeded? How many parties would there be and where would they stand on the issues?

This article is inspired by a New York Times opinion by Lee Drutman, which ticked me off for not having a single party in the top-left quadrant. My quiz will be more like 8values, though.

Let’s assume our alternate America uses a party-list, proportional system to elect the House of Representatives, with a low thresh-hold.

The Senate and President can be elected using favorability voting — with the latter allocating electoral votes proportionally — since we’d want third parties to actually be able to win there too.

I presume this would lead to a situation like they have in the Netherlands, with a lot of small, similar parties, since Americans would be quite eager to vote their conscience for once. It’d calm down after a while, but the political scene would be hectic for a few years.

Political parties wouldn’t have to create coalitions to form a government, since the President is elected separately from the legislature. The Senate, however, still has to approve the President’s cabinet picks, while the House needs to elect a Speaker — so coalitions will form one way or another.

Political Party Quiz

Take this quiz to figure out which party fits you the best! (Requires JavaScript and might not work on IE or older browsers.) Feel free to read the rest of the article before or after; click here to skip the quiz.

Your Results Are In!

Your location is indicated by a purplish-black marker on the top edge of each bar, while each political party is represented by its logo (see below for more information); you can hover your mouse over one of these logos to figure out its name. It's up to you to decide which political party you like best.

Economic Issues


Cultural Issues


Authority Issues


Foreign Policy Issues

Economic Issues

Cultural Issues

Authority Issues

Foreign Policy Issues

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The Axes

Economic

Economic issues include regulation, welfare, and healthcare. This axis ranges from Socialism on the left to Capitalism on the right.

Cultural

Cultural issues include abortion, gay marriage, the death penalty, pornography, and prostitution. This axis ranges from Liberalism on the left to Conservatism on the right.

Authority

Authority issues include gun control, vaccines, and anti-discrimination laws. This axis ranges from Authoritarianism on the left to Individualism on the right.

Foreign

Foreign policy issues include immigration, free trade, and a national language. This axis ranges from Globalism on the left to Nationalism on the right.

The Parties

Democratic & Republican Parties

Blue Donkey, Red Elephant
Democratic & Republican logos

The Democratic and Republican parties would still exist, albeit with a lot less internal variance. In our alternate America: the Democrats would be moderately left-wing and the GOP would be moderately right-wing.

Most multi-party democracies end up with two, large parties, one representing the moderate left, and another representing the moderate right — but Americans might be less willing to vote major-party after being stuck with them for hundreds of years.

I'm going to predict the Democrats would be the major left-wing party, but the major right-wing party would probably be Donald Trump's Patriot Party.

The Democrat's 2020 presidential candidate would've been Joe Biden, while the GOP would've ran someone like Mike Pence.

Progressive & Green Parties

Green Party logo

The Progressive and Green parties would be solidly left-wing. The Greens would be slightly to the left of the Progressives, and they'd obviously care more about environmental issues.

Progressive Party logo (remix of Sparrow Silhouette by Andreas Plank)

In most multi-party democracies: the green party is separate from the left-wing party, despite having similar views — but we might end up with just one left-wing party (probably the Greens, since they already have the infrastructure).

I created a logo for the Progressive Party based on the logos of the state-level parties of the same name in Vermont and Washington.

Howie Hawkins would've remained the GP's presidential candidate, while Bernie Sanders would be the Progressive nominee.

Patriot & Constitution Parties

Patriot Party logo

The Patriot Party would revolve around Donald Trump, and the reigns of power would probably pass to one of his children when he retires or dies.

The Patriots would be keen on conspiracy theories, especially pertaining to electoral fraud and vaccines. They'd be solidly right-wing on social and cultural issues, but center-right on economic issues.

I was tempted to make their logo orange, because Trump, but it's more likely they'd use the more traditional red, white, and blue. The flag in the center represents patriotism, of course.

Their 2020 presidential candidate would obviously be Trump.

The Constitution Party would still exist, being solidly right-wing on social, cultural, and economic issues. Unlike the Patriots, they wouldn't care as much about conspiracy theories.

The Constitution Party's candidate was Don Blankenship.

Reform & Moderate Parties

Reform Party logo

The Reform Party would automatically become the major centrist party, specializing Populism, anti-corruption and deficit hawking. They don't take stances on social issues, but appear to be moving towards the center-left.

Rocky De La Fuente was the RP's 2020 presidential candidate, but they might've ran a moderate like Susan Collins in our alternate timeline.

Moderate Party logo (remix of Balance by David, from the Noun Project)

Conservative Democrats like Joe Manchin, joined by centrist Republicans, would probably create their own, center-right, conservative-liberal party — which I'll call the Moderate Party.

The logo I made uses the color purple to imply they're between the left (blue) and right (red); the balance scales are used to depict Centrism.

Their presidential candidate would've been Joe Manchin.

Libertarian & Liberal Parties

Libertarian Party logo

The Libertarian Party would be able to snag a few seats, perhaps attracting liberal Republicans (who don't make up enough of the electorate to form their own party).

They'd be solidly right-wing on economic issues, like the Constitution Party, but solidly left-wing on cultural issues, like the Progressive Party. They'd also take anti-authoritarian positions on gun control and free speech.

The Libertarian presidential candidate in 2020 was Jo Jorgensen.

Liberal Party logo

I presume "conservative" Democrats like Kyrsten Sinema would form a liberal-conservative party, which would be more moderate than the Libertarians, but also distinguish itself by supporting gun control — let's call it the Liberal Party. The Liberals would strongly support feminism and LGBT rights.

(Yes, Liberal-Conservatism and Conservative-Liberalism are different things.)

I made the Liberal Party's logo a raised fist, to symbolize liberation (especially of minorities) and used the color pink to represent feminism.

The Liberal Party would've ran Kyrsten Sinema for President in 2020.

Christian List

Christian List logo

The American Solidarity Party is a Christian democratic and distributist party with left-wing economic positions and right-wing social positions — except for the death penalty, which they oppose.

Most of their support comes from Catholics, and I'd assume they'd get a lot of support from Hispanics leaving the Democratic Party en masse. They'd probably end up supporting immigration reform.

The Prohibition Party is similar to the ASP, but they support prohibition, obviously, and take more moderate stances on economic issues. Most of their support comes from Protestants, especially Southern Baptists (dry counties are still a thing in the South).

Due to their similarities, I'm going to predict they enter into an electoral pact, which I'll call the Christian List. The ASP would probably end up being larger, thus getting more of their candidates onto the list.

I also assume there would be a tradition of nominating an ASP member for President and a Prohibitionist for Vice President.

The logo I made for the Christian List is quite simple, with a cross for obvious reasons, and the color orange to represent Christian democracy.

In 2020, the Christian List would've ran the ASP's presidential candidate, Brian Carroll, while their VP candidate would've been Phil Collins of the Prohibition Party.

National Labor Party

NLP logo (remix of Hammer by John Caserta, from The Noun Project)

Last, but not least, is the National Labor Party. As their name suggests: their two, main focuses would be Nationalism and worker's rights.

The NLP would be to the left of the Christian List on economic issues, and to their right on immigration, foreign policy, and cultural issues.

They'd promote Isolationism, stronger border security, less legal immigration, and greater levels of assimilation for those who do immigrate — which would get them called "far-right" by left-wingers.

Along with the Democratic and Progressive parties, It'd be popular among African Americans, and would thus focus on issues that affect the Black community, like police brutality.

Unlike the Democrats and Progressives, however, they would not support defunding the police. They would instead propose reforms such as requiring police shootings be investigated independently.

The NLP might even attract conservative Muslims if it takes a particularly strong stance against alcohol, usury, and immodesty — although its stance on immigration might drive them away.

Their logo is a bit different than the other logos I made, with a blue background instead of a white one, but I think it turned out nice. The hammer, obviously, represents the working-class. Red is the color of the working-class, while blue specifically represents blue-collar workers.

I can't say with certainty who the NLP's 2020 presidential nominee would be, since there's no major, political figure who fits the bill. Josh Hawley and Bob Casey are close, but neither are sufficiently left-wing in their economic policy.

I assume their candidate would be relatively unknown before the election.

Regionalist Parties

Regionalist parties like the California National Party might gain a few seats, but I doubt they'll get enough to matter unless a political crisis strains regional differences — although there may be regionalist factions within the parties I mentioned above.

Extremist Parties

The Party for Socialism and Liberation would become America's chief communist party, but I doubt they'll get enough votes to get any seats. The National Socialist Movement would be in a similar predicament.

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