Party systems are a phenomenon that links all aspects of life in each individual country. What explains such a bold statement? First of all, the essence of this phenomenon, a detailed consideration of which will be presented below.
Party systems and their types
In political science, it is customary to begin consideration of any social phenomenon with its characteristics. In this sense, party systems are special forms of organization of political power in a country where its main elements, political parties, are the determining factor. The definition appears quite vague, and therefore it is necessary to identify the main features of the phenomenon in question.
Party systems are characterized by:
- Relationship with the state - in this case we are talking about how the state apparatus interacts with the party;
- the presence of legal parties - i.e. their legal approval from the state;
- the number of parties actually participating in the political life;
- the ability to create legal coalitions.
In this regard, the definition given above should be changed. Thus, party systems are special forms of organization of political life in a country, according to which the number of key elements of the phenomenon in question and their interrelationships are determined.
However, the signs are not only the basis of the characteristics. In fact, they determine the classifications to which party systems are subjected. And their types can be represented as follows:
- according to the number of parties operating in the country (typology by J. Sartori) - one-party (Cuba), with a leading party (China), with a predominant or dominant party (Japan before 1993), a system of simple pluralism (USA), moderate pluralism Germany), extreme pluralism (the number of parties more than 5, for example, Italy);
- a simpler division by the same sign is given by the majority of political scientists, and it looks as follows: one-party, two-party, atomized (unlimited number of parties) and multi-party.
- by the legality of the existence of parties - non-partisan, with a fixed and a list of names of parties, with their free number.
The three classifications presented are basic. Be that as it may, most political scientists share party systems solely on the number of parties and the freedom to access political life. It is this approach that reveals the relationship between the system and its main element.
Political parties and party systems
A political party always appears as the main element of the phenomenon in question. The content of the existing players in the political arena, in general, consists of both the current system and its development. Or rather - the transition from one type to another.
The content of a political party is determined by the means by which it seeks influence in the state. Funds are divided into democratic and quasi-democratic. There are many examples in history when the methods of de facto methods hidden under the mask of concern for the people and their interests were authoritarian. This situation is explained by the simple use of the institution of electoral law, which is inherent in most modern countries.
So, political parties and party systems are connected in the following aspects:
- the party system determines which parties and in what quantity will function in the territory of a particular state;
- the actual number of parties in the country's political arena determines the type of system, and, consequently, its development;
- legal consolidation of the system depends on which parties are currently in power;
- a change in the actual quantity and quality of political parties inevitably leads to a transformation of the system.
These are the main key points that determine the type of government and political regime in the country, as well as the essence of the state itself.