In a two-party system, voters have mostly two options; in this sample ballot for an election in Summit, New Jersey, voters can choose between a Republican or Democrat, but there are no third party candidates.
Andrew Jackson was the seventh president of the United States (1829–1837) and the first Democratic president.
Economist Jeffrey D. Sachs.
Martin Van Buren was the eighth president of the United States (1837–1841) and the second Democratic president.
According to one view, the winner-takes-all system discourages voters from choosing third party or independent candidates, and over time the process becomes entrenched so that only two major parties become viable.
Senator Stephen A. Douglas
Equestrian portrait of William III by Jan Wyck, commemorating the landing at Brixham, Torbay, 5 November 1688
The 1885 inauguration of Grover Cleveland, the only president with non-consecutive terms
In A Block for the Wigs (1783), James Gillray caricatured Fox's return to power in a coalition with North. George III is the blockhead in the center.
Leaders of the Democratic Party during the first half of the 20th century on 14 June 1913: Secretary of State William J. Bryan, Josephus Daniels, President Woodrow Wilson, Breckinridge Long, William Phillips, and Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry S. Truman, 32nd and 33rd presidents of the United States (1933–1945; 1945–1953), featured on a campaign poster for the 1944 presidential election
John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson, 35th and 36th presidents of the United States (1961–1963, 1963–1969)
Jimmy Carter, 39th president of the United States (1977–1981), delivering the State of the Union Address in 1979
Bill Clinton, 42nd president of the United States (1993–2001), at The Pentagon in 1998
Barack Obama speaking to College Democrats of America in 2007
President Barack Obama meeting with the Blue Dog Coalition in the State Dining Room of the White House in 2009
Eleanor Roosevelt at the 1956 Democratic National Convention in Chicago
President Barack Obama signing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into law at the White House on March 23, 2010
Secretary of State John Kerry addressing delegates at the United Nations before signing the Paris Agreement on April 22, 2016
Shirley Chisholm was the first major-party African American candidate to run nationwide primary campaigns.
President Lyndon B. Johnson signing the Immigration Act of 1965 as Vice President Hubert Humphrey, Senators Edward M. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy and others look on
Then-Senator Barack Obama shaking hands with an American soldier in Basra, Iraq in 2008
President Jimmy Carter and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin in 1978
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meeting with President Barack Obama at Ben Gurion Airport in 2013
Self-identified Democrats (blue) versus self-identified Republicans (red) (January–June 2010 data)
Higher percentages of Democrats than Republicans are members of union households.
Elected at age 33, Jon Ossoff is currently the youngest member of the U.S. Senate.
Hillary Clinton was the first woman to be nominated for president by a major party.
Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg
Vice President Kamala Harris
Julián Castro served as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth
Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer
U.S. opinion on gun control issues is deeply divided along political lines, as shown in this 2021 survey.

The Democratic Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States.

- Democratic Party (United States)

the Democratic Party versus the Republican Party in the United States, the Labor Party versus the Liberal—National Coalition bloc in Australia, the Labour Party versus the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom, and the Labour Party versus the Nationalist Party in Malta.

- Two-party system

3 related topics

Alpha

In 1868, this committee of representatives prosecuted President Andrew Johnson in his impeachment trial, but the Senate did not convict him.

United States Congress

Legislature of the federal government of the United States.

Legislature of the federal government of the United States.

In 1868, this committee of representatives prosecuted President Andrew Johnson in his impeachment trial, but the Senate did not convict him.
The 1940 painting Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States, depicting George Washington presiding over the signing of the United States Constitution.
United States Congress c. 1915
Historical graph of party control of the Senate, House, and Presidency. Since 1980, the Democrats have held the Presidency for four terms, but because of the Senate filibuster, have only been able to freely legislate in two years. The Republicans have been similarly disabled.
Congress's "power of the purse" authorizes taxing citizens, spending money, and printing currency.
Congress authorizes defense spending such as the purchase of the USS Bon Homme Richard (CV-31).
Congress oversees other government branches, for example, the Senate Watergate Committee, investigating President Nixon and Watergate, in 1973–74.
View of the United States Capitol from the United States Supreme Court building
The impeachment trial of President Clinton in 1999, Chief Justice William Rehnquist presiding
Second committee room in Congress Hall in Philadelphia
Library of Congress Jefferson Building
Lobbying depends on cultivating personal relationships over many years. Photo: Lobbyist Tony Podesta (left) with former senator Kay Hagan (center) and her husband.
An Act of Congress from 1960.
The House Financial Services committee meets. Committee members sit in the tiers of raised chairs, while those testifying, and audience members sit below.
In this example, the more even distribution is on the left and the gerrymandering is presented on the right.
The Federalist Papers argued in favor of a strong connection between citizens and their representatives.

Although not legally mandated, in practice since the 19th century, Congress members are typically affiliated with one of the two major parties, the Democratic Party or the Republican Party, and only rarely with a third party or independents affiliated with no party.

Conservative Party (UK)

Robert Peel, twice Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and founder of the Conservative Party
Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, served as the first Conservative Secretary of State.
Winston Churchill, who was twice Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
1929 Conservative poster attacking the Labour Party
Harold Macmillan is closely associated with the post-war settlement.
Edward Heath, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1970–1974)
Margaret Thatcher, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1979–1990)
John Major, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1990–1997)
Rail modal share (rail's share of total travel), 1952–2015
David Cameron, Prime Minister (2010–2016)
Theresa May, Prime Minister (2016-2019
Prime Minister Theresa May, right, with U.S. President Donald Trump, left, at a joint press conference in 2019
Boris Johnson, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (2019–present)
Conservative Party supporters at Pride London in 2010
Margaret Thatcher (second left), Ronald Reagan (far left) and their respective spouses in 1988. Thatcher and Reagan developed a close relationship against the Soviet Union.
The National Conservative Convention is held during the Conservative Party Conference.
Share of the vote received by Conservatives (blue), Whigs/Liberals/Liberal Democrats (orange), Labour (red) and others (grey) in general elections since 1832
The Conservatives' "oak tree" logo in Union Jack colours at the 2011 party conference.

The Conservative Party, officially the Conservative and Unionist Party, and also known colloquially as the Tories, is one of two main political parties and current governing party in the United Kingdom, winning the 2019 general election with an overall majority in the House of Commons.

Harold Macmillan demonstrated a similarly close relationship with the Democratic administration of John F. Kennedy.

Republican Party (United States)

Abraham Lincoln, 16th president of the United States (1861–1865) and the first Republican to hold the office
Charles R. Jennison, an anti-slavery militia leader associated with the Jayhawkers from Kansas and an early Republican politician in the region
Ulysses S. Grant, 18th president of the United States (1869–1877)
James G. Blaine, 28th & 31st Secretary of State (1881; 1889–1892)
William McKinley, 25th president of the United States (1897–1901)
Theodore Roosevelt, 26th president of the United States (1901–1909)
Herbert Hoover, 31st president of the United States (1929–1933)
Ronald Reagan, 40th president of the United States (1981–1989)
Donald Trump, 45th president of the United States (2017–2021)
Calvin Coolidge, 30th president of the United States (1923–1929)
Arnold Schwarzenegger, 38th governor of California (2003–2011)
John McCain, United States senator from Arizona (1987–2018)
Donald Rumsfeld, 21st United States Secretary of Defense (2001–2006)
Colin Powell, 65th United States Secretary of State (2001–2005)
Newt Gingrich, 50th Speaker of the House of Representatives (1995–1999)
Annual population growth in the U.S. by county - 2010s
This map shows the vote in the 2020 presidential election by county.
Political Spectrum Libertarian Left    Centrist   Right  Authoritarian
U.S. opinion on gun control issues is deeply divided along political lines, as shown in this 2021 survey.

The Republican Party, also referred to as the GOP ("Grand Old Party"), is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with its main historic rival, the Democratic Party.