The United States is divided into 435 congressional districts that are introduced by two main parties - the Republican and the Democratic. The members of each party represent ideology of their party; they have their vision of the political situation in the country and know what laws should or should not be adopted (Andris et al.). Nevertheless, in order to make a decision, the representatives of both parties should come to a certain compromise, which is a very challengeable task because everybody tries to support his/her own point of view. During the recent years, the impossibility to find a common language between parties has increased. As a result, parties cannot adopt laws, and this has a negative effect on the wellbeing of the entire nation. Today, the partisanship in the House of Representatives is the highest since the 1940s. Hence, polarization in Congress is viewed as a negative process, when parties provide their own ideology and ignore others. In this way, each party insists only on its own policy line and refuses to accept another party’s perception of the political life. According to this fact, the further polarization of Congress will have more destructive consequences for American society, if parties cannot find a compromise and unite in order to solve the current issues.
Naturally, the collaboration has decreased. The risk of going astray from the stage of one’s party for cooperating may result in a negative response by an authentic party and member’s party voters (Murray and O’Connor). One can see that instead of some individual ideology, party affiliation forms the way, in which some particular issues are voted upon and framed. Those members of Congress, who change parties, augment their voting behavior rather often. However, such augmentations should not occur if the ideology and policy are stable. Among other possible restraints to collaboration and potential causes of political leanings one can see redistricting, wealth allocation, amendments in Congressional procedural regulations, campaigner activity at major elections, the rise of twenty-four news cycles, Southern political rearrangement, and other new kinds of media that are combined with increasing political predisposition in reporting.
Moreover, gauging the lack of connecting with one another transversely party lines creates some particular challenges. The methods, which observe bias, investigate the function of each personality in a feature space or by utilizing an indexing method that provides each representative with a numeric significance corresponding to how strongly their activity reveals Democratic or Republican performance (Klein). Regarding social networks, one can state that they give representatives an opportunity to be connected by related committee associations or by a high number of registration vote conformities that have been effectively utilized in order to show associations and even foresee a member’s reelection accomplishment. Over the years, the Democrats have had primarily the bigger number of seats in Congress than the Republicans. However, this tendency has changed recently; some Democrats support the ideology of republicans and it leads to the misbalance of forces in Congress. Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson described this phenomenon in their book Off Center: The Republican Revolution and the Erosion of American Democracy as “Republicans are galloping right while Democrats are trotting left” (qtd. in Waldman).
The public reaction to the ideological divide in Congress is mostly negative. First, it is connected with the consequences on Congress’s performance. The more parties are divided, the more difficult for them is to make a correct decision. As a result, they spend much time debating rather than adopting laws that should bring positive changes to society. According to this fact, society gets a segmented Congress with parities that cannot come to a common conclusion, laws that are not adopted, which leads to the new problems. Hence, the current situation in the US parliament cannot be viewed as a positive one by the Americans. The citizens require changes and they hope that Congress will provide these changes.
To sum up, it can be said that polarization in Congress is the consequence of the historical background; from the very beginning of the parties’ existence, they can hardly find a common language. Nevertheless, they could always find a compromise and put their efforts for the general welfare. Today, the parties’ division is more visible than ever, each party tries to defend its ideology and it leads to the negative impact not only within Congress, but also on those that have an influence on American society.
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