Polarization of the Parties


Photo Credit: Marlee Mikesell The 2020 election is already very divided, and it is only in the early stages. The republican and democratic parties have become very split overtime, and that is causing issues with this election.

Marlee Mikesell, Team Leader

It is both an honor and our civic duty to vote; however, with polarized political parties I personally am struggling with picking who I want to vote for. Since being a kid, I have always wanted to vote, but I did not think that my first time voting would be an election that would be so historic. 

The Democratic and Republican parties have become very split. The candidates are all very left or right wing, there seems to be no in-between. This makes it very hard for people who do not side with either republican or democratic to figure out who they want to vote for, especially for people registered as independents.

Even the news media has become biased. Fox news is primarily a republican based news media; while CNN is liberal. There is no moderate news media that people can look to for honest and unbiased reporting. For being a first time voter, I want to hear all the sides, but I have struggled with finding a source that is honest and does so.

Polarization is obvious in social media and streaming services. Advertisements are catered to your political views and show you advertisements that align with your personal views.

These news medias are influencing people to become stuck in the mindset that their party is correct and the other is wrong. I personally believe that the media is to blame for the polarization among the parties.  

According to US History, “Not surprisingly, the voting behavior of people who are actively interested in politics is probably not changed by the media. Committed Democrats and Republicans selectively learn what they want to from media sources. However, the media can sway people who are uncommitted or have no strong opinion in the first place. Since these voters often decide election results, the power of media in elections can be substantial.”

Since the current president is a Republican there are not any Republican debates. However, the Democratic debates have been very heated and all the candidates are attacking each other.

With everyone attacking people or being attacked. It is hard to decipher what is true and what people’s goals for the United States are. I have watched almost all the debates and I always leave having learned nothing and only left knowing who attacked who.

The primary election is going to occur at the national level on March 3rd, 2020 and the state level on June 30, 2020. The primary election will determine the democratic representative for the presidential election. Since Donald Trump is in office currently, he most likely will receive the nomination for the republican party. 

“In a recent paper, the Democratic voter-targeting firm Catalist projected that about 156 million people could vote in 2020, an enormous increase from the 139 million who cast ballots in 2016.” Ronald Brownstien a journalist for The Atlantic said, “Likewise, Public Opinion Strategies, a leading Republican polling firm, recently forecast that the 2020 contest could produce a massive turnout that is also unprecedentedly diverse.”

With the split parties, this election is going to be one of the most divided elections in America’s history. There is even concern that the democratic party is going to be a contested election. It is going to cause major controversy, and uproar. I am still undecided as to who I will vote for in this next election, but I hope that the parties will grow to be less polarized.