Money, or lack thereof, makes third party candidates all but obsolete. And, large campaign contributions seem to be drowning out the voice of the average citizen. That’s according to Wisconsin Democracy Campaign’s Mike McCabe.
While Wisconsin legislative candidates are raising record amounts of money for a general election year, third-party candidates and independents are not the recipients. “The United States really has a two-party system and there are a lot of institutional barriers to the success of third-party candidates.”
Earlier this month the government watchdog showed that legislative hopefuls received about 3-point-5 million dollars in campaign contributions in the first half of the year. But McCabe says it’s all going to the two major parties, he says, leaving third party and independents with a drop in the bucket by comparison. “The Democrats and the Republicans have such a huge amount of cash. You look at the third party and independent candidates for assembly and senate and … altogether they raised just over $2,700.”
McCabe says the financial contributions are spread pretty evenly between Democrats and Republicans, but incumbents fair better than their challengers — with four times as much cash in their coffers ($3.35 million versus $814,711).