We need more than 2 parties.



I got to thinking, what would the election look like if instead of a list of candidates and parties, the ballot was just a listing of candidates positions on various topics? I recognize this would likely make voting more difficult, and next to impossible to determine clear/fair language for issues, but I think there’s got to be a better method than just party/name recognition.

http://www.isidewith.com/ has something similar to this idea. It gives you a list of issues, and you can say “yes,” “no,” or you can be more specific. Then after you’re done, it gives you a listing of what % match to the current batch of presidential candidates you are.

You can also share results with friends, and see how you compare via your results link.

Post your results in the comments, but also, if you found anything that surprised you.



You can find me on twitter, @DrDavidBurger

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  • Ibis3

    We had one of these questionnaires put up by CBC in the last election here. All the Conservatives (and many NDPers and some independents and Greens) were fuming, saying the thing was fixed to come back with “Liberal” no matter what. It didn’t occur to them that most Canadians actually *are* liberal in their views and policy choices and that’s why a high, high percentage of results came back that way.

  • Grant

    I took that quiz a while back. I was surprised to find that I matched most closely with the Green Party candidate, though Obama was a close second.

    • Nick Johnson / Remijdio

      It was the same for me.

      • Gordon

        and me, 90% to 85%

        • Anonymous

          thats because the green party makes sense!!!

  • LeftWingFox

    I also hit 90% with the Greens and Democratic party, 94% with Jill Stein and 87% with Barack Obama.
    I’m a little surprised that Gary Johnson hit 75%, while Mitt Romney was a mere 7% match.
    That said, there wasn’t a lot of discussion about government involvement in the economy or tax issues, which would probably drive a major wedge between my positions and the libertarian party.

  • Zed

    Jill Stein – Green Party. I didn’t even know who was running for the Green Party before now.

    Jill Stein – 92%
    Obama – 83%
    Romney – 23%

  • HP

    Having a functional multiparty system in the United States would require huge constitutional reforms. At the very least, we’d need a much, much larger Congress, and potentially move to a parliamentary form of government.

    Until such time, I intend to vote for “the lesser of two evils,” and would encourage everyone to do likewise. We could have a functioning democracy if the two parties were compelled to compete to be less evil, all the time.

  • ReasJack

    CGP Grey makes the case that the US First Past the Post voting system is the problem.
    It guarantees 2 party rule.

  • Ibis3

    I’m not American, so they wouldn’t let me vote anyway but my numbers were:

    Stein – 93%
    Obama – 88%
    Anderson – 83%
    Johnson – 63%
    Romney – 6%
    Goode – 2%
    I was a little surprised at the 63% for Gary Johnson, but as LeftWingFox says, there are issues where we differ that weren’t raised.
    I got
    97% Democrat
    91% Green
    19% Libertarian
    3% Republican

    • Tom

      Not American either, but:
      87% Stein
      77% Obama
      69% Anderson
      64% Johnson
      8% Romney

      90% Dem
      84% Green
      39% Lib
      3% Rep

      Side with Obama/Stein for everything bar Health (Anderson) and Domestic (Johnson). Immigration has me (somehow) siding with both Obama and Romney… (also Goode, but I have no clue who he is)

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/wwjtd JT Eberhard

    Jill Stein: 83%
    Barack Obama: 76%
    Rocky Anderson: 68%
    Mitt Romney: 27%

    Democrats: 93%
    Green: 83%
    Libertarian: 37%
    Republican: 24%

    Knowing I have that much in common with Romney and the Repubs, I am now going to take a shower.

    • Lyfa

      Don’t mind. Romney has flip flopped on so many issues, that you can’t avoid him completely. And while the pubs tend to be pretty bad on key issues, they do have some good ideas, so…

  • ewok_wrangler

    I’d never heard of Jill Stein but like everyone so far, I hit with her 97% and the Pres only 87%.
    This uniformity of results (in a sample of, so far, 6) suggests something about this blog’s readership. And I feel really, really comfortable with you-all…

  • Jessa

    Stein: 92%
    Obama 89%
    Anderson 78%
    Johnson 76%
    Romney 20% (How often to they have to change the scoring on this quiz? Seems like how much you side with Romney on issues could change pretty quick.)
    Goode 13%

    Democrat 99%
    Green 89%
    Libertarian 46%
    Republican 7%

  • Heather

    88% with Jill Stein (Green) and somewhere in the 80%’s with Obama. I would love to vote Green, but the last time the Green party had a surge of votes, Bush got into office.

  • CC

    Like many other commenters, I got Jill Stein followed by Obama. I’ve looked over the Green Party platform and I pretty much agree. It looks like Stein IS going to be on the ballot here in Washington, so I’ve got to decide if I want to take a vote away from Obama, so to speak.

    During the 2004 election season, I became convinced that we should vote for the person we actually want, rather than use our votes strategically to beat the party we don’t like. In ’04, we ended up with John Kerry as the democratic presidential candidate because he seemed to be the most likely to beat Bush, not because anybody was really passionate about him. I think the same thing is happening now with Romney. Nobody really loves Romney. He’s the beat-Obama candidate (and not a very good one at that). Like Kerry, he’ll probably lose.

    If we all voted for the candidates we actually wanted, rather than settling for the least offensive democrat or republican, that would enliven our political system tremendously. I’d love a chance to be more passionate and less cynical about my choices. The problem is, we all face this fear: if we don’t vote for the lesser-evil major party candidate, the greater-evil major party candidate will get elected. Which should we prioritize: fear of the major party candidate we DON”T want, or passion for the candidate we DO want?

  • Baal

    I was 97% with Jill Stein and the Greens. I wish we had a democracy where the voters were the only interested parties. Some folks get to use corporations (and their assests) or have so much wealth that they get extremely disproportionate representation. I’d love something like a 20% rule – you may only buy 20% of the tv add slots (time of day to be assigned randomly) in a single media market (existing ad sale structure is ok to use) via a single medium (radio, TV, internet is trickier). It’d also take SCOTUS rulings since it’d ‘curtail’ free speach (which is somewhat perverse since it’s entirely possible for a single rich family to buy literally all the ad space relevant to certain races – i.e. only 1 speaker has free speech, noone else does).

  • http://criticallyskeptic-dckitty.blogspot.com Katherine Lorraine, Chaton de la Mort

    99% Obama
    91% Stein

    Not surprised, TBH. There were some areas where I think it got reduced because of the answers I chose not necessarily being ones that would be chosen by the candidates, but it makes sense. I got 25% with Libertarians and 5% with Romney – ouch.

  • http://home.earthlink.net/~trolleyfan David Johnson

    What we need is zero parties – then maybe people can start voting for the person, rather than the letter next to their name.

  • http://frog-monkey.blogspot.com.au/ Lucy Mayne

    I’m an Australian but took the test anyway, and I was best matched by the Greens, closely followed by the Democrats. Is it bad that until now, I didn’t know there was a Green party in the US (and I like to think I take an interest in US politics)?

    As an aside, in Australia, we have a preferential voting system, which makes it possible to vote for a minor party without throwing your vote away.

  • Brad


    89% Gary Johnson, 88% Jill Stein, 82% Barack Obama, [some people I've never heard of], 13% Mitt Romney “No Major Issues”. Win :)

    • Brad

      I should have prefaced this by saying I’m English, and so only did this for giggles. We have a similar website over here which I used for our last general election… turned out I’m a ‘Tory. Who’d have thought?

  • pjmaertz

    92% Obama

    89% Stein

    30% Romney(?! )

    94% green

    92% dems

    30% repubs

    3% Goode (probably happy about that)

    I’m a little surprised that I agree 1/3rd of the time with mittens. That’s pretty upsetting.

  • RuQu

    Make sure you click the “Show X more questions” button at the bottom of each subject. It defaults to showing just three per broad topic.

    Also worth checking out the Other box instead of just Yes/No on each question. Many of them provided more nuanced answers.

    My results were:
    Jill Stein 90% on foreign policy, domestic policy, healthcare, environmental, science, social, and immigration issues
    Barack Obama 87% on economic, science, environmental, foreign policy, social, and immigration issues
    Rocky Anderson 73% on foreign policy, environmental, healthcare, economic, social, and immigration issues
    Gary Johnson 53% on immigration issues
    Mitt Romney 16% no major issues
    Virgil Goode 1% no major issues

    By party, I had closer agreement to Democrats than Greens, despite closer agreement with Stein than Obama.

  • neatospiderplant

    I took it the other day and got:

    Obama 96 %
    Stein 88%
    Anderson 71%
    Johnson 67%
    Romney 10%
    Goode 2%

    I’m not really surprised there.

    My husband took it this morning and got:

    Stein 89%
    Obama 88%
    Johnson 73%
    Anderson 60%
    Romney 54%
    Goode 24%

    I’m not completely surprised, but I hate that he matched Romney that much

  • Steve Andrew

    What a great idea!

    I live in Britain and even though on paper we have a multi-party system, they’re all so focus-grouped and centrist it’s hard to know who to vote for in the 2015 election. Also, I operate under a simple process of elimination when deciding to vote for:
    I lived through the 1980s, so I could never vote Conservative, I lived through the early 2000s, so I could never vote Labour, and after 2010, I doubt I could ever vote Lib-Dem again. Tempted by the Greens next time, but they seem to support unproven alt-med on the NHS, so I may just go independent in 2015. I’d really love a test like this in the UK, so I could decide on a candidate based on policies.

    Even though I’m not American, I took this test and seemed to get similar results to most of you guys: Stein 96% (never heard of her, unsurprising given the media’s short-sightedness), Obama 89% and, hilariously… Romney 0%.