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Iowa's Non-Major Party Candidates in the 2014 Elections

Ulises Jorge / flickr

The Republican and Democratic parties dominate politics in our state and our country.

In this edition of River to River - conversations with all five Iowa candidates not aligned with either of the major parties.

The Independent candidates running for Iowa's open Senate seat include: Bob Quast, who calls his party “Bob Quast for Term Limits,” Rick Stewart, and Ruth Smith. The non-major candidates running for Iowa's 3rd Congressional District are: Bryan Jack Holder, Independent Liberty candidate, and Libertarian candidate, Ed Wright.

We have structured a system that will prevent a third party from arising - Dave Andersen

Dave Anderson of Iowa State University joins us to talk about the history of our two-party system, and the influence candidates outside the major parties can have. He argues that the founding fathers did not envision a two-party system, but did “set the seeds” for such an organization with the electoral system we have.

“By the way we structure our elections with having a pluralist vote…you really create a disincentive to have a third party system," he says. “If a third party shows up and starts being competitive, one of the two major parties will tend to steal their issues and voters.”

Libertarian candidate for the U.S. Senate, Dr. Doug Butzier, was killed in a plane crash north of Dubuque Regional Airport earlier this week. Ed Wright offered these words in response to the news.

“Doug was a friend and an admired champion for liberty. He will be sorely missed.”

Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River