Op-Eds Opinion

Presidential candidates build strong fan bases

Alex Thomas
Staff Writer

People are opinionated about just about everything in life, that’s a fact. Politics is one of the most opinionated topics, it’s almost impossible to have a civil discussion with people on this topic these days. Usually, a person is in love with one candidate and despises another one. If said person hears something good about the candidate they hate, then they’ll immediately have to say how much they hate that person and will refuse to hear anything else. Debate? More like screaming over each other. This isn’t an issue on one side, it’s an issue for everyone, we refuse to hear the other side out and stick to what we believe in. Personally, I feel like that makes us less likely to learn about the other side’s interest.

This usually happens with every election, but I’ve never seen it quite like it is right now. Some people actually become sick at the mere sight of something pro-Trump or if they hear something pro-Trump. Ditto for the other side, who can’t stand anything Bernie Sanders and who would rather have their ear drums burnt than hearing the saying “Feel the Bern” ever again. It may be dramatic , but some of the opinions I’ve heard on both of these people make what I just wrote look like it’s PG-13.

What I don’t think people realize is that both Trump and Sanders are preaching something so different that it is actually similar. Donald Trump is not a politician, he’ll even admit that and he has said it before during his campaign. Bernie Sanders isn’t some powerful politician either, although he has spent his whole career in Washington, he isn’t one of those ‘sexy-names’ like Clinton or Bush. Both of these candidates represent something very similar. They represent a change from the established line of being a politician who works his or her way up to the ladder, they are both coming in guns blazing so to speak and screaming that what we have now is not working.

Remember Barrack Obama’s campaign in 2008? “Change we can believe in” and “Hope” were two big selling points for the current President. These selling points were eaten right up by the voter base and eight years later Obama is getting ready to pass the torch. Both Trump and Sanders are doing the same thing, they are preaching change and they are preaching a movement away from what is established. It’s almost outlandish, and quite frankly it is brilliant on both sides.

Honestly, who wants another politician in office who is a puppet for investors? As much as Sanders’ funding has been talked about, Trump isn’t taking big money donations either, he is self-funding his, to this point, has been a successful campaign.

Both of these men are very different in their views. Sanders appeals to the far left portion of the meter while Trump appeals to the far right portion of the voters. That’s the other thing that appeals to people, these guys are very entrenched in what they believe in. You may not like it, but both have anchored themselves into their corners and neither are budging. They’ve said what they believe in and those are the hills they will die on, borrowing a line from Bill Daly.

They are appealing to the common person too in some regard. Trump hosted an absurdly popular reality TV show on NBC while Sanders teamed up with living legend Larry David for one of the best SNL skits in a long, long time.

Personally, I have opinions on both of these candidates, some of those opinions I have made known via this column throughout the march to the White House. If there is one thing that we can all agree on, it is this: These two candidates are captivating in certain ways and have both made politics almost mustwatch TV again. Are either of these two fit for the White House? I have my doubts, but there is a sexiness that has returned to politics after a dull time.

A lot of people in my age group care again and will take to the polls in the upcoming election, at least they saw so. It’s good to see people taking things like this seriously, finally.

I think that’s why we are seeing this unlikely matchup shaping up in a hurry. Both of these candidates are preaching something so unusual that it is actually working right now. Will either get the nomination? That’s anyone’s guess, but we can’t ignore that they have both gotten this far on the premise of preaching something different and almost outlandish.

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