Thanks for reading and commenting, Dave! I agree that third-party voters can sometimes be a little naive about how things get done in government. Sometimes, though, I think they just get frustrated. A lot of the arguments against third-party candidates revolve around the notion that there simply isn’t any room at the table for third parties in America. But even if that’s the case, it doesn’t discredit the ideas and principles being put forth by third parties and their supporters. And at the end of the day, I think that’s what a lot of third-party voters want to talk about — principles and ideas. They don’t often get that chance, though, thanks in large part to how they’re treated by the media.
That being said, compromise is sometimes necessary to get things done, and third-party voters can be a little too stubborn when it comes to that sort of thing. If they want to make inroads, they do need to be more flexible, IMO. Your story about the UK’s Liberal Democrats is a great example of what happens when you’re unwilling to ever meet anyone in the middle.
Also, I didn’t know about this vote-swapping app you mentioned, but that sounds like a clever idea. I’ll have to check it out!