Their organization is based on a coherent set of particular beliefs regarding society, economics and politics. These beliefs are usually have shades of Marxist ideals. Ideological parties do not receive many votes, but they have long lives. Examples: The Socialist Party USA and the Libertarian Party
The Libertarian Party stresses independent living with responsibility. That means each person has the right to control their own lives as they see fit. The party was created in 1971, and has become America’s third largest party.
Since 1980, The Socialist Party USA has been recognized by the Federal Election Commission as a national party. The Socialist Party USA: Statement of Principles- “ THE SOCIALIST PARTY strives to establish a radical democracy that places people's lives under their own control -- a non-racist, classless, feminist, socialist society in which people cooperate at work, at home, and in the community.” This party has local commissions in 22 states; they are mainly in the Midwest, and the East Coast
These parties focus on only one policy agenda; as the name suggests. Single-Issue parties disband because their issues became unimportant to the population as a whole, their issue did not attract voters and either one of the major parties take on their issue. Examples: Free Soil and Right to Life parties
In 1848 the anti-slavery Democrats merged with the Conscience Wigs to form the Free Soil Party. There single policy issue was the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia and to exclude slavery in federal territories. They also supported homestead laws, high tariffs and internal improvements sponsored by the federal government. Their candidate in 1848 was Martin Van Buran, and he received enough votes to split the Democratic vote; That allowed for Zachary Taylor (a Whig) to win the presidential election.
These parties form during economic discontent. Rather than form their own ideology, they state their anger of the major parties and demand a better future. Their anger is usually focused on abstract ideas, like the monetary system. Economic Protest parties have historically gained support from the agricultural West and South. These parties usually disappear as economics times have improved. Examples: Greenback and Populist parties
The Populist party is seen as a continuation of the Greenback party. They demanded public ownership of railroads and telephone and telegraph companies, lower tariffs, and the adoption of the initiative and referendums. This party started because of droughts in the West, and low cotton prices in the south. The Populist Party had a candidate win a senatorial election in Kansas; his name was William Peffer (treated as a joke). Also, the Populist Party gained control of the Kansas legislature.
But, the Populist Party disbanded because of fraud, intimidation and violence from Southern Democrats. Also, factions stated to appear; some people wanted to “fuse” with the Democrats while others sought to remain a third party.
These parties broke away from one of the major parties. They have historically been the most important minor parties. Usually, splinter parties form around a charismatic leader who failed to win an election with a major party.
Democrats: The Progressive Party of 1948 with Henry Wallace, the State’s Rights (Dixiecrat) Party of 1948, and the American Independent Party of 1968 with George Wallace. Republican: The Bull Moose-Progressive Party of 1912 with Theodore Roosevelt. And, the Progressive Party of 1924 with Robert La Follette
Created by Theodore Roosevelt because he lost the Republican party’s presidential nomination to William Howard Taft. He thought that Taft was not doing a good job in office, so he formed his own party. The party’s platform called for women’s suffrage, social welfare for women and children, farm relief, revisions in banking, health insurance for industries, workers compensation, and easier methods to amend the constitution.
In the election of 1912 Theodore Roosevelt ran against Taft, and many people believe that his entrance into the race split the republican vote. That led to Woodrow Wilson winning the presidency. After the 1912 election the “Bull Moose” party floundered in state and local elections. When Theodore Roosevelt refused to run in 1916, the party dissolved.
In 1984, the Green Party began as a Single- Issue party. But, it evolved into a minor party that goes beyond any categories.
The Green Party came to prominence during the 2000 election when Ralph Nader was its presidential nominee. That campaign was based on environmental protection, universal health care, gay and lesbian rights, restraints on corporate power, campaign finance reform and opposition to global free trade; those are just a few of Nader’s 2000 campaign issues.
This party gains support through community campaigning, and not from corporations. The Ten Key Values of the Green Party of the United States: Grassroots democracy, social justice and equal opportunity, ecological wisdom, non-violence, decentralization, community-based economics and economic justice, feminism and gender equality, respect for diversity, personal and global responsibility and future focus and sustainability.