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Political Science
Paul Hamilton

POLI1F90 Wednesday January 18 2012 Party System y Sum total of relevant parties in a given country y USA 2 party system y Canada Multiparty now o 1993 Thanks to NDP and Bloc Quebecois y UK Germany 2party system o UKLabour and ConservativesReigning parties have at times worked with minority governments y Number of parties affected by electoral system o Winnertakesallsystems lead to fewer parties as smaller parties do not get any seatsOur system distorts electoral outcomesParties may be regionally concentrated whereas the Green party may be much more dispersed throughout the country y Parties reflect existing social cleavages o eg language ethnicity region religion y No feudalism no socialism o No mass based socialist party in the USDepends on the history of the country US did not have a history of feudalism born in liberal age Cleavages y A persistent division based on longterm demographic or economic characteristics such as language religion class or region y Never eat sunflower seeds before you talkIm a slave to the roasted salted nut y Western alienationpeople in western Canada often feel that Ottawa does not respect their interestsWestern premiers and politicians try to distinguish themselves from the politics of Ottawa y Quebec has a linguistic and regional cleavage y Canada has huge foreignborn population large indigenous population and a minority national community Quebecois y UKcleavages are often classbased o UK is the union of England Scotland Wales and Northern Ireland Ideology y In the West parties moving toward catchall model o The bigger the tent the harder it is to please everyone y Examples UK Labour underafter Blair PostClinton Democrats
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