This assignment is worth 100 points.
Respond to one of the following assignment options as fully and completely as possible (at least 500 words). Submit either Option 1 or Option 2, but not both.
The Tea Party Patriots are currently a faction within the Republican Party who promote more fiscal conservatism and smaller government. How viable are their chances of splintering off from the Republican Party, existing as a party of their own, and electing candidates to federal office? More generally, how do third parties and their candidates affect elections in the United States?
In what ways are interest groups such as the American Medical Association or the National Rifle Association similar to political parties? In what ways are they different? If either of these associations were to announce the initiation of a political party tomorrow, what would the association have to do to create a party?
Hint: On the last component of the question, do not concentrate on what they would have to do to create a party that would successfully challenge the Democrats or Republicans. Rather, focus on what they would have to do to meet the theoretical criteria discussed earlier. Feel free to learn more about these two interest groups:
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