Recently there have been rumblings on social media and Catholic blogs about the American Solidarity Party (ASP), a small but growing third party which takes its bearings primarily from those Catholic social principles which are endorsed by a number of non-Catholics as well, specifically subsidarity and — naturally — solidarity. For those not inclined to click around the party’s website to get a grasp of what it stands for, Susannah Black, writing over at Front Porch Republic, has penned an extensive piece detailing the ASP’s history and vision. I suggest you all read it.
Now, from the get-go, there are several aspects of the ASP which I could quibble with. For instance, its absolute stance against the death penalty does not align with Catholic teaching, though, as a prudential matter, I can certainly see the utility in placing a moratorium on it until the United States undertakes more comprehensive criminal-justice reform. Moreover, there is room to discuss the appropriate limits of centralized government programs, entitlements, and wealth redistribution; at this point ASP is keeping its platform fairly general, not particular. And last, Catholics need to always be on guard against letting a political party or movement with non-Catholics turn into an opportunity for religious indifferentism or syncretism.
With that said, I encourage all of you dear readers — Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant — to give serious consideration to the ASP as an alternative to the dreadful options being walked out by the Democratic and Republican parties. The ASP may not fully capture every platform point you hold dear, but if you are faithful to your respective confession’s teachings, I think you will find the ASP comes far closer to upholding them than any other American political party. (For my part, my policy preferences are a bit closer to what a party like Ukraine’s Svoboda upholds, but I’ll save that discussion for another day.)