Keeping current on current events

Story by: Sydney Shurman, Reviews Editor

The current state of politics is an interesting one, to say the least. Currently in the running are Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders for the Democrats, and Ted Cruz, Donald Trump, and John Kasich for the Republicans.

On the Democratic side, not many people could have guessed that one of the candidates would be a self-proclaimed “Democratic Socialist.” However, Bernie Sanders has actually gained far more support than I would have suspected. He has managed to get many younger Americans on board with his political campaign, especially with his promise of affordable higher education.

As a liberal, I believe that many of his ideas could benefit our country, but the term Socialist tends to be off-putting to quite a few Americans. Unfortunately for supporters like me, this means that Sanders has been unable to garner enough delegates so far, especially with most of the superdelegates pledged to Clinton. Superdelegates have quite a bit of sway, since they are free to vote however they choose, or however their party wants them to.

According to Real Clear Politics, Hillary has a total of 1,712 delegates, with 1,243 coming from the American people and 469 coming from the Democratic Party’s superdelegates. Sanders only has a total of 1,004, with 975 coming from Americans and 29 coming from superdelegates. While he may sadly be losing, there is still a chance that he can win the nomination, and he has still managed to get enough support to cause quite a stir and prove that there are plenty of people who want change. Or perhaps some people are just afraid of the Clintons’ corruption.

The Republicans have no shortage of controversy with their candidates either. In a shocking turn of events, Donald Trump has been consistently leading in the Republican polls. A man who had his own reality television show, talks about building a wall every five minutes, and is a businessman who has gone bankrupt four times is the current leader in the Republican party.

Whatever issues I or anyone else may have with Trump, he has managed to gather a huge following. Out of the 1,237 delegates needed to win, Trump has 739. This is probably for the same reason that Bernie Sanders has gotten support: people want change.

“I think the American political system is corrupt, and I think we need a political revolution,” said Geneva Pleasant, 11. “There should be more than two political parties, because those do not cover what everyone wants.”

The other Republican candidate that promotes change is Ted Cruz, and he is quickly gaining momentum. Coming up in a close second with 465 delegates, he might be the only person able to give Trump a run for his money. The only problem is, he might not be any better than Trump. Cruz’s solution to a problem seems to be to simply shut down the government, which would not really get much done.

Rubio recently announced his shocking departure from the Republican race, leaving Trump, Cruz, and Kasich as the only Republican candidates. Kasich is trailing far behind Trump and Cruz though, leaving me wondering why he is even still in the race.

The 2016 election has no lack of entertainment value, but witty quips and shocking statements are not enough to run a country. It seems that people are more and more disillusioned with how our government is run, and rightfully so. However, change can come in many forms, and not all of them are positive.

Democratic candidates

Story by: Sydney Shurman

As the 2016 election draws nearer, the American people begin to hear more and more about about the candidates in the running. The Republicans have not wasted any time in sharing their opinions, but the Democrats are now taking the stage after the recent debate.

In the running currently are Lincoln Chafee, Hillary Clinton, Jim Webb, Bernie Sanders, and Martin O’Malley. Joe Biden has yet to announce whether or not he will run, but he may not be a strong candidate.

I can die a happy man never having been president of the United States of America, but it doesn’t mean I won’t run,” Biden said.

Any president should be fully committed to a cause, and it should not just be something they simply feel like doing. Biden does not seem fully prepared to be president, especially considering his previous election success, or lack thereof. In the 1988 election, he dropped out after being exposed for plagiarizing other politicians’ speeches. Then, in 2008, he only acquired support from 1% of Iowa caucus delegates.

Hillary Clinton initially seemed like one of the worst choices, but during the debate she held her own and stuck to her beliefs. Between the Benghazi scandal and now her recent email mistake, Clinton seemed inept and unapologetic. But during the debate, Bernie Sanders made an interesting comment.

“Enough of the emails. Let’s talk about the real issues facing America,” he said as the crowd burst into applause.

While the emails should not necessarily be overlooked, Sanders is right. Hillary Clinton proved that she could be capable of making changes to how this country is run. Ultimately, her ideas about workplace reform, changing the income gap, and giving hard-working immigrants opportunities for citizenship–to name a few–are far more important to the American people.

Bernie Sanders also has some new and refreshing ideas that could possibly be just what America needs. He supports socialized medicine as well as reasonably priced higher education, which are policies that successful European countries like Germany, Sweden, and Belgium have in place. Also, he is in favor of being isolationist and only getting involved when there is a threat to America or its allies. This means that countless dollars and lives could be saved in an effort to avoid unnecessary wars.

Sanders and Clinton have definitely proven themselves to be the forerunners in this election. While Webb, O’Malley, and Chafee were present at the debate, none seemed to stand out nearly as much as Clinton or Sanders, despite having similar views. Voters seem to have similar opinions considering the appearance of the polls. Clinton is in an obvious lead despite some of her negative actions in the past.

“Hillary Clinton will probably win because she has so much name recognition as well as the fact that she was a former first lady, Senator from New York, and a Secretary of State,” said Mrs. Terrel, history teacher. “So people know who she is and they’ll feel more comfortable with the idea of choosing someone if they know how they would act in a position of power.”

While Sanders has great ideas, they could be simply that: ideas. Some of the people closest to Sanders are supporting Clinton, which shows that he may not have the capability to act on his words. In addition, Sanders considers himself a socialist, which can be a major red flag to many people due to its connotation. Unfortunately, his views may just be too radical for the majority of people who would prefer a more moderate president who can compromise when necessary.

The American people will have to wait and see, but this is proving to be an extremely important election, and all of the Democrats have policies that might actually reform this country.