Only 418 Days to go until Elections

Hillary Clintons face appears on merchandise owned by an NDP student.

Grace Sullivan

Hillary Clinton’s face appears on merchandise owned by an NDP student.

Grace Sullivan, News Editor

Even though elections are not until 2016, America has spent much of the past year under a constant deluge of debates, scandals, and controversies. Polls that once showed Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton as the most likely Republican and Democratic nominees respectively have now turned. To the surprise and, perhaps, chagrin of many, Donald Trump is now heading the polls as Republican frontrunner. Meanwhile, on the left side of the aisle, Hillary is facing serious competition from other contenders such as Bernie Sanders, Martin O’Malley, and perhaps even Joe Biden.
But what is it causing Clinton’s decline? During her time as Secretary of State, Clinton used her private email server to send mail related to her public position. To many, Republicans as well as some Democrats, this constitutes a violation of the law. To others who remain firmly in the Clinton camp, the backlash is seen as an attempt to dethrone the heroine of the Democratic Party. It certainly would not be the first time Hilary has been attacked; her critics frequently focus on her appearance, her age, and her relationship with her husband. While Hilary may still rally, the email scandal has made room for others to gain attention.
Bernie Sanders, a Senator from Vermont, has captivated audiences with his support of the working man, his dedication to fair wages, and his loathing for the ability of money to rule politics. Sanders has also gained fame by self-identifying as a socialist, which increases his appeal to many who feel that true change is needed for our country.
Donald Trump made headlines this summer when he said, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re sending people that have lots of problems. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” This blatant prejudice seems to have struck a chord with many Americans. And Trump’s brash disregard for political correctness may be the thing propelling him ahead in the polls. Trump’s stance on climate change is that it is a hoax. His stance on the Affordable Care Act is that it should be repealed, and his stance on immigration is that we should “build a wall” and forcibly deport every single undocumented immigrant. The frightening thing is not the single crazy man that is Trump; the true concern is the many Americans who feel he mirrors their own beliefs.
So much air time goes to Trump, to Clinton, to Bush, and to the others that it seems evident that our nation is obsessed with the process of election. But once in office, what do our politicians do for us? If so much time is spent pandering to donors, when does our country actually get governed? As concerned citizens, we must remember that we have voices as well, and we have agency in deciding who shares our same voice. Ultimately, it is up to us whether America fulfills its proposition of being of the people, by the people, and for the people. And we make this decision by discerning between the antics of the political circus and the true arguments that shape our future

Healy, Patrick, and Megan Thee-Brenan. “More Republicans See Donald Trump as a Winner, Poll Finds.” The New York Times. 15 Sept. 2015. Web.