Terms Glossary

Good Party's Terms Glossary is a list of definitions of words from the political and elections world. These terms are from an independent's perspective with an eye toward reform. If you have a suggestion for a new definition, send it to ask@goodparty.org.

Non-Partisan

Non-partisan refers to a political system or process that is not affiliated with or controlled by any particular political party. This can include elections, appointments, and policy-making processes that are open to candidates or participants from a wide range of backgrounds and viewpoints.

In the United States, non-partisan elections are often used at the local level, such as for school board or city council races. In these elections, candidates do not have to declare a party affiliation and are instead judged on their qualifications and experience. This can create a more open and inclusive political process that is not dominated by the two major parties.

Non-partisan approaches to policy-making can also be effective in fostering more collaborative and consensus-based decision-making. For example, some states have established non-partisan redistricting commissions to draw legislative districts, which can help to reduce the influence of partisan politics on the redistricting process.

Non-partisan approaches can be an important way to break the stranglehold of the two major parties and create a more diverse and representative democracy. By removing the party label, non-partisan processes can allow independent candidates to be judged on their own merits and help to create a more level playing field.

According to data from the Pew Research Center, around 40% of American voters identify as independents, which suggests that there is a significant demand for non-partisan approaches in the United States. By encouraging the use of non-partisan processes and supporting the efforts of independent candidates to participate in the political process, we can create a more open and inclusive political system that works for everyone.