- Category: Volume 88 (Fall 2016 - Spring 2017)
- Published: 26 October 2016
- Written by ALBERT SHALOM | STAFF WRITER
This upcoming November, citizens will face a choice of, perhaps, the most unique presidential election in the entire history of the United States. What makes this election so unique are the attitudes, both of the candidates, as well as the attitudes voters sport in reaction to each candidates’ policies.
The first Presidential election of this cycle was the most ever tuned and watched debate. Many different media outlets and news agencies claim that one candidate won over the other in the debate. However, what is it that really matters to voters and what’s more important to voters? Is it their attitudes and feelings towards the potential presidential candidates or do voters put more of an emphasis on the presidential candidates’ agenda and/or policies?
Some even believe that third party candidates may play a major role in this election and should be allowed to partake in the widely publicized and televised presidential debates. However, Katharine Dix, a junior political science student, believes “this is not the election to vote third party.”
Jarrett Branch, a sophomore political science student, gives his take: “The presidential candidates are supposed to be the best this country has to offer because being the president is one the most important jobs in the world. I feel this year we have to select from a group of candidates that aren’t the best the United States has to offer, but will bring something different to the Oval Office in being elected.”
Professor Aaron Ferguson, Chair of the Communication Department, agrees that this election is different than many of the previous ones. He said, “While the election cycle is often negative with candidates attempting to separate one’s agenda from another, this election, is the most negative of my lifetime.”
Dix, however in response to the attitudes and feelings versus candidate’s proposed policies and agenda stated that she is voting for Hillary Clinton of the Democratic party because of both. She explains: “I believe in the same things she does and have read her proposed presidential policies multiple times and am incredibly supportive of them.”
She then continues on to cite Hillary’s experience: “I don’t believe she is as corrupt as people say she is, and think that her years as a law professor, first lady of Arkansas, first lady of the United States for 8 years, Senator of NY for 8 years, and being secretary of state for 4 years has given her more than enough experience which is why I have such a positive attitude towards her.”
Ferguson also believes that it is a combination of both attitude and policies. He said, “The attitude of the candidates matter, as they are representing every citizen of the U.S. As for policies of each individual candidate, what they stand for or believe in, usually it separates the candidates in the minds of the public. I know that I vote for the candidate whose policies and attitude is a best representation of my ideals and values.”
When asked, Dix explained, if hypothetically speaking, Donald Trump of the Republican Party would have the same attitude and vibe, but had Clinton’s policies would she vote for him? She responded: “I also can’t see someone who has his attitude and temperament with Clinton’s policies.”
However, she concludes in her own opinion that “the main thing that matters is their policies and experience. Honestly, if someone is qualified and believes in the right thing, I don’t care what scandals they may or may not be involved in because I still think they’ll do good for the country.”
Branch, however, provides some insight when he explains how “a person’s attitude towards a candidate should not matter when selecting someone to vote for, but since voting has been made into a personal experience it is almost impossible to separate the two.” Ultimately though, he says “I would vote for a candidate based off their policies because I feel when you bring personal feelings into an election your judgement might become clouded by your feelings.”
There is no doubt that this election is definitely one of the most, if not the most, interesting presidential elections the U.S. has ever experienced and been through since its conception. The decision as to who will hold arguably the most powerful position and leadership for the entire world, ultimately rests in the hands of voters.