UNAIR NEWS – An event of Democracy is being held in the United States. US General Consulate in Surabaya, Heather Variava, on Thursday, October 27, visited Campus B Library, Universitas Airlangga to share and talk about the USA general election. The event held in American Corner was attended by UNAIR students and students from other universities.
In the sharing session, Heather said that free and just general election is the pillar of democracy. General election communicates the citizens’ voice to the administrations fundamentally. US Constitution gives some power to the central administrations, state administrations and the people. In some countries, central administrations determines the policy on education and health, but in the USA, they are main obligations of the 50 states.
“US Constitution guarantees all United States citizens over 18 years old the right to vote in federal election (national), state and regional,” said Heather.
Even though the requirements to assume federal position are regulated by US Constitution, every state has its own constitution and laws for the state officials. Heather also stated that requirements to assume federal position are regulated by the US Constitution. To be a president, a candidate must be born as US citizen without naturalization process, at least 35 year old and has been US citizen for at least 14 years.
According to Heather, the founding fathers who write the Constitution never knew that there will be political parties. But along with the widespread right to vote, political parties appeared. In 1830s, there were two big solid and influential parties, The Democratic and The Republic.
“Currently, the political domination in US belong to Republican Party and Democratic Party. Both are descended from the original parties in the 18th and 19th centuries,” said Heather.
With rare exception, both parties’ members can control presidency, congress, governorship, and state regulations. Since 1852, the presidents of the USA have either been from Republican Party or Democratic Party.
Heather added that US have little small political parties because the USA applies single winner plurality voting system, the winner is decided through majority votes.
In countries which distribute legislative chairs based on accepted votes proportions, little parties still have hopes to be establish and to compete. In US system, a party gets a chair if the candidate gets majority votes. That is why small political parties difficult to win the election. (*)
Author: Lovita Marta Fabela
Editor : Dilan Salsabila