The GOP has a huge problem right now with division. Their only hope is that the Democrats continue to have similar problems, a wish that may be granted if Clinton is indicted for her role in the email scandal — a possibility that grows by the day. Despite the party’s attempts to bury the debates and aid Clinton’s ascent to the nomination, Sanders continues to defy gravity for many of the same reasons Trump does. Like Trump, his ideas are aimed at exploiting the anger and ignorance of his supporters, but he is also lucky enough to have an opponent who is basically Dick Dastardly from the Wacky Races — stopping to break the rules even when she’s ahead just to do it.
Clinton has managed to stave him off thus far, despite his gains in the polls and mopping the floor with her at the debates. That’s apt to change if he is able to pick up a few early states, a very distinct possibility as he continues to appeal to younger voters and those on the left angry at their perceived slights by the establishment and the government.
Of course, the Democrats have two major advantages that the GOP doesn’t at the moment. First, they only have two candidates. Okay, three, but does anybody honestly think Martin O’Malley’s campaign is any more viable than Jeb’s? The second advantage is that each candidate actually has a fairly well-defined platform, whether you agree with it or not is beside the point. Several of the GOP candidates do as well, but their seems to be an inverse relationship on the right between ideas and poll numbers. The most well-defined platform is arguably that of Sen. Rand Paul, and Trump’s platform seems to be nothing more than “yell at everybody until they give in.”
Of course, by the time the nominations are decided, most of the party faithfuls will still fall in line, often voting against their own interests and that of their nation because they like the little “D” or “R” next to the candidate’s name more than they like spending anytime thinking about issues or becoming educated on what matters.
If the rancor continues on both the left and the right, however, third parties may finally be able to make some inroads and grow. To be sure, it’s pretty unlikely that we’ll see a Green or a Libertarian in the White House in 2016. But disaffected voters across the political spectrum certainly should exercise their ability to move away from the two party oligarchy that has gotten us to the point where we are seriously considering a bloviation supervillain, a politician whose corruption would make Richard Nixon blush, an economically illiterate socialist, or the bevy of theocrats that make up most of the GOP.