By: Hanna Humphreys
With less than a year left before the New Hampshire primary, the 2016 election is a hot topic in the national discourse. At this point, nine candidates have announced they will be competing for the world’s most powerful position, but several more are sure to announce before the end of the summer.
On the democratic side, as of May, only two candidates have entered the race to the presidency. The expected nominee, Hillary Clinton, announced her candidacy on April 12th before kicking off her official campaign in Iowa shortly thereafter. The former First Lady and Secretary of State has been constantly under the spotlight since late 2014, and even more since news of her use of private email surfaced in early March this year. Clinton is currently under investigation for emails related to the Benghazi scandal of 2012, but this has not stopped her from shaping her platform. Clinton recently came out with a controversial stand on immigration, calling for “a path to full and equal citizenship,” and she believes same-sex marriage is a Constitutional right.
Clinton’s only opponent so far is former Vermont senator, an independent running on the Democratic ticket, Bernie Sanders. Although Sanders raised $1.5 million in his first 24 hours officially running, he is still a dark horse. Sanders’ main fight is against big business and he plans to run without financial help from a Super PAC.
Other potential democratic candidates that have yet to announce include former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley, former Rhode Island senator Lincoln Chafee, former Virginia senator Jim Webb, vice president Joe Biden, and Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren.
The Republicans have quite a diverse and competitive primary field, with seven official contenders so far. There is yet to be an obvious leader, although Florida Governor Jeb Bush appears to be leading the most current polls, followed by Florida Senator Marco Rubio.
Businesswoman Carly Fiorina recently announced her candidacy, strongly stressing her knowledge of the economy. She is the second woman in the race.
Kentucky libertarian senator Rand Paul is running as are Mike Huckabee, who announced he was running after he resigned from Fox News, and neurosurgeon Ben Carson. Carson recently apologized for his public comments saying that prison makes people gay and that being gay is a choice. A few others have yet to announce, but NJ governor Chris Christie, Ohio governor John Kasich, and Louisiana governor are a few additional politicians expected to join the race.
Photo from: Dr. Hotze