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As a rule of thumb, because the offices are so similar to each other, governors have tended to make better presidents than, say, first-term senators. But, for almost the first two centuries of the United States’ existence, the profession that produced the most successful presidents aside from the political sphere itself was the military. After every major war, the country has elected a general as its President — George Washington after the Revolutionary War, Ulysses S. Grant after the Civil War, Dwight D. Eisenhower after the Second World War and very nearly Douglas MacArthur after the Korean War. Now, however, it seems as though the game is changing and businessmen are starting to run instead of career military men.
Hillary Clinton, as many analysts say, faces an uphill battle against Bernie Sanders now that the Southern primaries are over. She just barely won in Iowa, Missouri, Illinois and Massachusetts. She lost in New Hampshire, Michigan and Minnesota. For Clinton, the further north she goes, the more her fate will be in the hands of super delegates.
Four years after his even more impressive but nevertheless unsuccessful independent run in 1992, Texas billionaire and Reform Party founder Ross Perot won more than eight million votes in the 1996 presidential election. In 1998, the Reform Party won its most significant victory with the election of Jesse Ventura, described by CNN political analyst John Avlon as a “radical centrist,” as Governor of Minnesota.
With the White House and Congress still battling over whether or not — and if so, with whom — to fill the vacancy in the Supreme Court, the November election is increasingly likely to be shaped as much by Washington as by the primaries.
At first glance, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg running for president doesn’t make sense. Between former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, why would Bloomberg risk splitting the Democratic ticket — not only splitting the ticket but splitting it three ways? To do so would give the Republicans an easy path to the White House.
In the weeks leading up to the Iowa caucus, according to Real Clear Politics, Donald Trump led the Republicans in Iowa by less than five percent. By Monday, when Iowa voters went to the polls, not so much to vote for a candidate but to vote on how many delegates will be sent to the national convention, Cruz managed to close Trump’s lead (and then some) enough to win the primary.
In late January, The New York Times reported that former New York City mayor Michael Rubens Bloomberg is seriously considering an independent run for president. Having been widely seen as a likely presidential candidate in 2008 and 2012, will the third time be the charm for the three-term mayor?
When speaking of political positions, “evolution” implies a single change in a single direction. To “flip-flop” implies multiple changes in multiple directions — first to flip, then to flop. Though these have become near-synonyms in political speech, political speech is not accurate speech.
As the months tick down to November, two things are becoming clear: one is that Bernie Sanders has a serious chance at winning the White House; the other is that his greatest obstacle to the White House might very well be the Democratic Party.
As Republican candidates debated in Charleston, South Carolina Thursday night, most were unremarkable. The uncharastically forceful tone stuck by Sen. Marco Rubio (FL) lasted only as long as his opening speech, former Gov. Jeb Bush (FL), now polling in the single digits, failed to make up any of his lost ground and retired Johns Hopkins neurosurgeon Ben Carson proved himself as simply out of the depth running for President.
In the U.S., we use a first-past-the-post system in our elections, meaning that whoever wins a majority of the vote—even if this is only 51 percent versus 49 percent—wins that election. Overall, I like this system. It means that if one candidate wants to win, they need to appeal to as many voters as possible rather than simply sticking to their nook constituency.
The Democratic elite may support Clinton, one of my classmates told me in one of our many political back-and-forths, but Democrats as a whole support Bernie Sanders. “Although,” my classmate added, “I suppose you could say the same of [Donald] Trump,” that Trump is dismissed or even hated by the Republican elite but tremendously popular with Republicans as a whole.
In Paris Friday evening, in a half-dozen cooperated attacks, men with AK-47s, grenades, shotguns and suicide belts attacked a restaurant, a sold-out concert hall and bombed a stadium. French President François Hollande was evacuated from the stadium, a curfew imposed across Paris and the French borders closed.
Political divisions, which seem obvious today, were still ill-defined in 1912. Amid a still-ongoing political pole-shift, Woodrow Wilson was something of a novelty—a progressive Democrat. His greatest challenger, Theodore Roosevelt, a former Republican, was a capital-‘P’ Progressive. Third- and fourth-place candidates were the still-Republican William H. Taft and socialist Eugene V. Debbs. Within a matter of years, the political realignment was nearing completion and the last of the progressives had left the Republican Party and, after briefly creating their own party, found a new home in the Democratic Party.
When I watched the first Democratic debate, I was impressed yet again with democratic socialist Bernie Sanders. Though I will not vote for him, any American politician who openly identifies as a socialist rather than skirting around their beliefs, perhaps calling it “capitalism with American characteristics,” has my respect—if only for honesty.
“Word and emotion together are the most powerful force known to mankind,” said Republican pollster Frank Luntz—perhaps best known for pushing the use of the terms “death tax” and “climate change” instead of “estate tax” and “global warming”.
Republicans faced-off in Cleveland, Ohio in the first debate of the primaries
on August 6th and, just hours earlier, seven others had faced-off. I
thought a second debate was a bad idea, but was glad to be proven wrong.
Within a week of seeing my words “[I] see only two names on
the political horizon: Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton” in print last February, I
felt very silly. Bush and Clinton, names which have been on the forefront of
American political life for almost as long as I’ve been alive, might as well be
the county’s former future prime candidates. While there’s much that can be
said about Sanders or the woefully oversimplified Scandinavian model of which
he is a proponent, I find Trump’s candidacy more interesting.
Bernie Sanders is going to say that the United States should look more like
Scandinavia, he must first present an idea of what the Scandinavian model
actually is. What is called “the” Scandinavian model is really three or four
models—political, geographic, demographic and economic—all happening at once.
But, which model does Sanders mean?
Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are not opposites, but rather they are competing populists. Candidates who, as libertarian Glenn Reynolds writes, “have come forward to claim the orphaned vote.”