McCarty analyzed the possible reasons behind escalating polarization and its consequences. The changes partly result from realignment in the organizational structure of the parties, the role of primary elections to nominate congressional candidates, changing media environment and increasing divisions within the electorate on race and social issues.
Several effects brought about by polarization including:
Allowing institutions to play larger roles in polity making process such as the president veto and the Senate filibuster. Congress's power is declining relative to the other branches of government , which leads to a lower capacity of Congress to enact the new laws and trajectory of existing ones. 2) Polarization effects at the policy implementation stage. Then McCarty turned to the question of how polarization has affected public policy outcomes by looking at its influence on social policy. The minimum wage and TANF program shows that after polarization escalated, adjustments became both less frequent and smaller. (The transformation of American Politics, Nolan McCarty)
A two party system normally works better than single party leadership system because its party supervision and correctional characteristic. However, in a polarized party system where Democratic and Republican behave totally different in some important aspects, one party expects to win the election by denying and overthrowing other's policies. Thus, another effect brought about by polarization would be inconsistent policy implementation.
One benefit coming along with polarization may lies in people's changing voting behaviour-- vote based on parties' policies instead of their party identifications (P.g 55,Comparing Public Policies, Adolino and Blake) --because the polarization hinders people's clear party identification. Since the 2008 election and gradual widening social cleavage, notably among general public and tea party member, people tend to claim themselves as independent voters and a substantial number of voters vote in a much more pragmatic style. (Video: Party Identification and Election, John Sides) .
Another benefit that might come with polarization is that it may reduce backdoor shady political agreement given the huge gap between party policies.
My question would be whether the polarization is doomed in a two party system because the nature of politics or because it is effected by social and economic conditions? Can policy making process avoid being effected by polarization? If can ,how?