Researcher Associate at the Centre for Politics and Media Research and a BA Politics student at Bournemouth University
Section 2: Campaign
- Evidence for the powerful roles of polarization and partisanship
- The emotional brand wins
- Donald Trump’s slogan betrays a renewed political fixation on the past
- Dog whistles and dumpster fires
- How Donald Trump bullies with his body language
- Analysing debate questions: is it time to rethink the town hall?
- Image bites, voter enthusiasm, and the 2016 Presidential Election
- Air war? Campaign advertising in the 2016 Presidential Election
- US election: what impact do celebrity endorsements really have?
- The backlash of the loose cannon: musicians and the celebrity cleavage
- The curious case of Jill Stein
- The Green Party effect in the US 2016 Election
- The #LolNothingMatters election
The procedure for selecting a candidate to run for president is a convoluted system. The process of candidate selection is organised through either caucuses or primaries, states choose either one of these systems to decide on their nominee. Essentially, the nominee is slowly narrowed from a list of prospective candidates. After an extensive process of campaigning, debates and public exposure, the candidate will have been selected through a series of votes.
Hilary has become the candidate for the Democrats because of her electability over Sanders, Sanders being too different, and radical for many. She has also been a key member of the American governing system for many years, taking roles such as senator and secretary of state. On many issues, Clinton has shown herself to be the more moderate of the two, choosing to take quite a soft line on the legal position of marijuana by reducing its status as an illegal substance, where Sanders believed in letting the states decide whether it should be legal or not. Sanders also believed that the death penalty should be abolished, where Clinton believed in just a reduction in its use.
Donald Trump has become the candidate for the republicans because of his views on the failings of the American system in the past, and the rhetoric with which he has lead his campaign, feeding the fears of immigration, and basically being in opposition to the past American system. He promises a strong America, one that focuses on the strengths of American people. He has said on many occasions that he wants to build a wall in order to provide more separation between America and Mexico. Furthermore, he claims he will be able to make Mexico pay for it. Cruz, one-time frontrunner, was, among other candidates, fairly uncharismatic, being unable to expand his support base in the way Trump was. Like with Sanders, Cruz was just too far off centre to consider for nomination being too much of a staunch conservative. People also found Cruz to be too boring to be nominee, being unable to relate to voters enough to garner significant voting support. Other candidates surpassed by Trump include Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush. Trump proved throughout the contest to be particularly skilful in the way he presented his image and the emotive way he delivered his speeches. His charismatic speaking and public image make him anything but boring, which drew the attention of the media and the public.
Unfortunately, neither are particularly attractive candidates, many voters are argued to be simplifying the election to being a contest to find the lesser of two evils. This dissatisfaction with the way the presidential elections are going is reflected by the choice of many to opt for a third vote. This is mentioned in the Guardian (2016), which details the names of the Green Party’s Jill Stein and Libertarian’s Gary Johnson. .
Now that we have these two candidates, they will enter a more competitive process of trying to win over states. Certain states have been historically set in their ways, always voting for the same party, . Finally, now that Donald Trump has been elected president, he will be fully in office the following January. This is called the presidential inauguration which is the specific start date for the elected president’s term. So by the end of the coming January, the most powerful nation in the world will have to establish a new leader, Donald Trump, in an environment of unstable international affairs. Many are feeling disenfranchised by the two presidential candidates, because of the way that the system currently works, bringing into the question whether reform of the electoral system should be considered. All in all, the new president has been voted as Donald Trump, so we now have four years to see the effect that he will have on America.