Is It 2016 Already?
Pick up any paper or national news magazine and there’s at least one political factoid everyone across the political/spectrum is in agreement about: The 2016 Presidential campaign has unofficially/officially begun! Barack Obama is only in the first year of his second term, and already candidates, on both sides of the aisle, are jockeying for followers, campaign funds, and news coverage.
On the Democratic side, all eyes and ears are on Hillary Rodham Clinton. As of this writing, she is the Democratic front-runner even if she has not officially thrown her “bonnet” in to the ring. After four years as Secretary of State, Ms. Clinton is trying to project a new and improved image. Her public appearances and speeches all trumpet the same tune. “I am not just the former First Lady! I am not just Bill’s wife! I have real credentials as an independent person. I am a certified politician and diplomat! I have been the Senator of New York. I have been Secretary of State! I know how to manage and lead. I know how to handle a crisis! I know how to make tough decisions! And, oh, by the way, because I have been the First Lady; because I have been my husband’s political co-worker and confidant; because I have been a Senator and Secretary of State, I know and have worked with the most important people in the world! So, don’t just vote for me because I am a woman and a Democrat. Vote for me because I am the next prepared person for the job!”
On the Republican side of the isle, there are at least two major players vying to be their party’s candidate: New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul. Paul is presenting himself as the conservatives, conservative. He is the son of former Representative and Presidential Libertarian candidate Ron Paul. Rand Paul is trying to find a marriage between long-term GOP values and a version of Libertarianism that wants to radically cut back the government’s role in American society and culture. Governor Christie, on the other hand, is trying to portray himself as a GOP follower, but a with a more liberal point of view when it comes to economic government activism.
I’m no pundit. I don’t know who the 2016 candidate will be, and frankly, at the moment, I don’t care. The nation still faces serious financial issues. We are not yet out of the recession. We are not yet out of Afghanistan. We need more jobs. We are facing a serious crisis in regards to the rising costs of higher education. 2016 will be here soon enough. I wish both parties and all the potential candidates could focus their energy on the here and now rather than the maybe’s of the future.