Multi-Party Local Elections?

I had an idea, read­ing an arti­cle on why nobody votes in local elec­tions, and how some of it is that those elec­tions are non-par­ti­san, and there­fore vague, dif­fi­cult, or unim­por­tant to vot­ers.

What if, when or if local elec­tions became par­ti­san, the sys­tem was set up to accom­mo­date more than two par­ties? What if then, once in office, peo­ple could explore what it means to gath­er with like minds around like ideas, and then work togeth­er and com­pro­mise? What if peo­ple could iden­ti­fy with some­thing oth­er than D or R when they ran?

We have a lot of issues in this coun­try with the two-par­ty sys­tem, and I have often tried to under­stand it—to explain it, to frame it—as two coali­tions of peo­ple of many dif­fer­ent “par­ties.” Greens and social­ists and lib­er­als and blue dogs and the lot gath­er and gov­ern as the “Democ­rats.” But it is not set up that way, and the bar­ri­ers to real mul­ti-par­ty elec­tions are many, like­ly impos­si­ble to over­come at the Fed­er­al lev­el. But what if we could explore it at the local lev­el?

My objec­tions to hav­ing par­ti­san local elec­tions are all about peo­ple vot­ing Par­ty-line with­out look­ing at can­di­dates or issues. At the local lev­el, a par­ty machine could over­whelm the mea­ger resources of local oppo­nents. It would make pol­i­tics even more polit­i­cal, if you can imag­ine. It would prob­a­bly take some elec­tion reform the likes of which we have been unable to attain. But again, we’ve looked at that at the Fed­er­al lev­el. What could we do at the local lev­el?

Would this be a way for con­ser­v­a­tives who are aghast at Trump to leave the Repub­li­can Par­ty with­out hav­ing to become Democ­rats? Yes, clear­ly.

I know there are a myr­i­ad of prob­lems with this idea. I grew up in Europe, so I have no rose-col­ored view of a many-par­ty par­lia­men­tary style gov­ern­ment. But what if?

Could this just be a sort of grass­roots thing? “I’m Joe and I’m run­ning for May­or in line with the plat­form of the Green Thumb Par­ty.” Could this be a way for con­ser­v­a­tives to decry Trump and the Repub­li­can Par­ty with­out hav­ing to become a Demo­c­rat? I know lots of them would like an option to do that.

Thought­ful com­ments only, please?