Without deviating from the topic too much and risking a lot of negativity around me but the Republican candidates are so opposed to what Putin is doing for, in and with Russia but their campaigns evolve around basically the same. The rich getting richer, the poor, poorer and the world around them a little bit worse off every day.
The dichotomy in the United States of two parties isn't the normal thing for Europe, true. One has to look at the foundations of the US to understand some of the thinking here that comes off as so weird to other nations. Overall, I'd say Liberals, which are found in the Democratic party and other third parties, are similar to parties in Europe. Even the Tories in the UK, are more like the Democrats in the United States.
The US was founded, largely, by two incoming groups of people:
1) Those seeking religious freedom.
2) Those seeking economic freedom.
The first group, unfortunately, was not seeking universal religious freedom. Most of them were various Protestant groups persecuted by state-sanctioned religions. Once they reached the shores of America, they had no problem persecuting other religions that entered their sphere of influence. This hypocrisy of religion continues in many ways today in the US.
The second group was not just gold-seekers and tobacco growers. There were many from the lower economic classes of Europe who were able to own their own land for the first time. Unfortunately, some came with visions of grandeur, and eventually, effective feudalism was set up in the Southern states in the form of antebellum slavery and the plantation system. Even worse than feudalism, slavery kept the poor white population in check as well...the rich whites kept the threat up that if blacks were freed, the poor whites might sink below them. This concept of pitting two poorer groups against one another continues to this day in the US in the form of various efforts by wealthy conservatives to keep working-class whites pitted against minorities.
The descendants and inheritors of these two groups are, respectively, the evangelical Christian movement, and big-business conservatives. When Ronald Reagan allied them in 1980, it gave the Republican party a significant advantage. Unfortunately, in the long run, it has been apparent to everyone (but the evangelicals) that the evangelicals were merely used for their votes by the Republicans. In the mid 2000s, the Republicans controlled the White House, both halves of the Congress, and had a majority on the Supreme Court--and did absolutely nothing to advance the desires of the evangelicals, such as banning abortion, or bringing prayer back to public schools.
Aside from the evangelicals and moneyed interests, there is a third significant group among the conservatives, the Tea Party. This seems to be a segment of the white population distressed with their shrinking percentage of the US population, and their consequently threatened white privilege. Conservatives favor the status quo
, and the increase in percentage of the non-white population of the country has them seriously alarmed. After decades (two centuries, really) of consistently minimizing, threatening, and harming black and brown people in the US, it should come as no surprise that most non-white citizens vote Democratic. Changing demographics point to an eventual loss of majority status for whites in the US, and with it will come a near-insurmountable election problem for Republicans. Basically...they made their bed, and now they have to sleep in it.
However, instead of admitting years of error and faulty reasoning and political chicanery, the Republican party has effectively doubled down on their rhetoric. Donald Trump is merely acting as a voice for millions of frightened, stubborn conservatives who cannot accept inevitable change occurring to their country. And, regardless of how hard they dig their heels in and refuse to budge, the march of time grinds inexorably to the Left as far as social and cultural norms are concerned. Younger generations are more tolerant of ethnic and gender differences, less religious, and more interested in socialist-based government. The Republican party is the party of older, whiter, male-er Americans, and as time goes by, their numbers are naturally shrinking from simple mortality.
This downturn and collapse of their base and power is causing a tremendous amount of angst and fear among Conservatives. Along with the Citizens United
Supreme Court decision, which basically allowed unlimited campaign financing by wealthy interests, these various conservative interests have now all got money behind them from the wealthy powers that be. This means that any politician with designs on the Presidency need merely find a rich donor, and the White House could possibly be theirs.
Now, as opposed to those two original groups, the religious and economic freedom seekers, whose spiritual descendants are the modern Republican party, the Democrats are formed primarily of descendants of marginalized groups--ethnic minorities, non-religious, union members, LGBTQ citizens, and a majority of women...as well as whites of more egalitarian modes of thought and belief. I suppose you're pretty much guaranteed to be a Democrat if you're, say, a black lesbian atheist teacher. This didn't have to be the case, but...at this time in history, Republicans have pretty much painted themselves into a corner using a bucket of white paint.