A Presidential election in the United States is always an important event. It is especially important when an 8 year incumbent leaves office. Who will be elected next says a lot! Will what had been changed or what new laws were passed stand the test of time? Or will what happened be rejected by the newly elected President and a new course be set? Will the new President accept what had been done in the last 8 years and add to that legacy and add to that by leaving their own imprint on those accomplishments? These are just a few of the questions that this election offers the voters.
This year’s Presidential election has a few new wrinkles that really put before history and the American voter the question of whether one of the major political party’s survive this election. The Republican Party is in crisis. What will the party look like after the election? Which faction of the party will win and take control of the party?
The major talk show hosts and their followers have helped coin a phrase that the media has latched onto, establishment candidates versus outsiders. The very real implications of the political battle that is under way defines the very question of what Republican Party will we see after the election. Are their enough disgruntled right wing voters to have their favorite candidate win the nomination for President and thereby change the Republican Party. Right wing voters want a conservative, a true conservative to be their party’s standard bearer. The fact is the current favorites for the nomination are what are referred to as outsiders.
Outsider candidates for the Republican Party represent a rejection of their own Republicans who have been elected to the Senate and House of Representatives. These Republicans are unhappy with what their Republican Congress has accomplished and they are demanding that their nominee fight for the changes that they want. Outsider candidates support a radical change to how our government operates. Working together and finding common ground for solutions seems to be out of the question. These outsider candidates are serious about physically removing the illegal immigrants that we have, and building a wall to keep them out, ending abortions under all circumstances, and drowning government in a bathtub by lowering taxes so much that our current programs would not have enough money to have the programs continue.
The so-called establishment candidates, and their supporters are traditionalists. They believe in working through our system of government to accomplish their goals. The old Republican Party is the party of fewer taxes and less government.
The Republicans are now having their own Civil War. The battle for the heart and soul of the Republican Party is escalating to the point that those who claim the mantle of conservatism are attacking the leading candidate for their party’s nomination, Donald Trump, with incredibly vicious attacks.
THE REVENGE OF THE ESTABLISHMENT, is underway. A past beacon of conservatism, the National Review, has set about an attempt to right the ship of this election. They are attempting to frame and brand Donald Trump as not being a true Conservative. In a scathing article known conservatives tell the reader the dangers to traditional conservatism of nominating Donald Trump.
In this article, they are in the process of eating their own, but at the same time, they are seeking to set, to their way of thinking, a more proper course for who their party will nominate. It is hard to imagine if this continues how the Republicans can gather themselves together to mount any kind of successful campaign after the nominating process is over. The emotions of what are being referred to as THE ESTABLISHMENT, are rising to a fever pitch.
Senator Graham of South Carolina said that the choice of either Trump or Cruz was like choosing between,” being shot or poisoned.”
Ladies and gentlemen the Republican Party has a problem and it is far deeper than being an outsider or being part of the establishment. Their problem is one of extremism and not offering the voters a positive candidate. It is hard to imagine, Barry Goldwater or Ronald Reagan recognizing today’s Republican Party. Where is the optimism?
There are only two Republican candidates who fit the mold of traditional candidates. Marco Rubio is an example of the American success story, a son of immigrants. His is a positive story. Governor Kasich is also a traditional American candidate, who sees government as a positive force for the improvement of the human condition.
The two leading candidates at this time would never be confused with the word statesmen, for they are far from being statesmen. They are candidates from the dark side of human nature and behavior. They are demagogues, who talk in simplistic terms. They offer what sounds like simple answers to difficult problems. They’re the embodiment of what John Adams worried about in looking forward to our future as a Republic. Both Trump and Cruz seek to take advantage of peoples willingness to be led and our greed. Each candidate uses emotion, the emotion of voters who want to blame others for their human condition. They both offer order out of chaos, and safety in a time of worry and fear. The problem is that they foster and encourage fear. Their vision of an American future may have the right words, a promise of a return to greatness, but what we would give up in terms of our values is not worth the cost that it would take to make their vision come true.
The two leading democrats running for the nomination for President of the United States offer us a completely different vision for our future. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, both offer America a government that can be a force for good. Both seek to address the unfairness of income inequality and the danger to our future economy that a continuation of our current situation would inevitably lead to. Hillary Clinton offers America her knowledge and experience to deal with the America that exists today. Bernie Sanders offers us a revolutionary change that would bring to us a different America, a vision of tomorrow.
The Democratic debates have proven that the leading candidates see different issues as being important to be addressed than what the Republican candidates see as being essential. There are some issues that each party shares among their concerns, but can see a stark difference in their concerns and their approaches to what needs to be done. This election is therefore different in many ways from previous elections. No one can complain that each party is the same. This election gives America a distinct choice on how we as a people want to move forward.
The Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary get this election underway. Our fellow Americans eagerly await the verdict of the American people.