You can cry if you want to, but if you don’t have votes – tough luck. As we near closer to the election one of the things we hear over and over again is the importance of swing states. These are states that don’t vote reliably blue or red in any election. One of the most common critiques you’ll hear of current fractured and dysfunctional political system is that our parties are parliamentary, but our system doesn’t reflect it. A parliamentary system would mean that when one party is in charge, it would (basically) have unlimited control to carry out its legislative agenda.
State and local legislatures have certainly become more productive over the past few years, no doubt due to the gridlock nature of national politics.While certainly nothing matches the power of federal government, t
here is an untold number of policies that the state enacts. For example: marriage equality, plastic bag bans, transgender rights, Planned Parenthood funding, healthcare expansion, and many more. The states serve not only as “laboratories of democracy” in their own rights, but also as leaders and warnings for how the future of the country will look.
Most states are under one party control, Republicans have united control (meaning both houses and the governor’s house) of 25 states and Democrats have unified control of 7 states. This means the majority of states live under unified control, much like the parliamentary system. It also means that the majority of Americans live under a form of unified control. Of course, this doesn’t change the importance of the federal government, but it does mean that the government that affects people every day acts somewhat reliable like a parliamentary system.
The reason why what kind of government we have is supposedly another form could bring us a HIGHER level of satisfaction. In this way, the states that are under unified control would hypothetical present higher levels of either economic confidence or health measures. Unfortunately, the polls seems to suggest that unified control while certainly legislatively productive that economic confidence is about the same. Which begs the question- what exactly is the point of my party?