The great (political) debate

Some of the top candidates for the 2016 presidential election

Some of the top candidates for the 2016 presidential election

The Iowa Caucus is over and politics are running rampant in preparation for the 2016 presidential election. When it comes to high school students, we usually see very strong opinions or none at all.  Some students pride themselves in political knowledge, while others could care less.  For those who are at the in-between phase, politics may be something that they value but are still working to figure out for themselves.  Regardless of where you’re at in your political stance, or if you’re registered to vote or not, most students would agree that it’s necessary to know at least a slight amount about the potential leaders of our country.  Here are a few brief summaries of some of the potential presidents we’re looking at right now.

Hillary Clinton: Democrat

Who is she? Former Secretary of State and former U.S. first lady to President Bill Clinton
Will defend and build on Obama’s immigration actions, believes immigrants are vital to the economy
Gun Control:
Believes in universal background checks for every purchaser
Believes climate change is a real issue, plans to stop drilling in the arctic and invest in clean energy
Defends the woman’s right to choose and stands with Planned Parenthood
Wants to provide access to good education with less testing and make public colleges debt-free
What students are saying:
“She has reasonable facts to back up her policies and good evidence about what she says… I don’t like how she wants to revoke the Second Amendment about the right to bear arms.” –Marisa Garcia, freshman

Donald Trump: Republican 

Who is he? Businessman
Plans to build an impenetrable wall to keep illegal immigrants out. If elected, he intends deport 11 million illegal immigrants
Gun Control:
Believes concealed-carry permits should be valid in all 50 states for self-defense purposes
Foreign Policy:
Wants troops focusing in on ISIS and claims that he would bomb them repeatedly. He also believes the U.S. should not be paying to defend other countries
Pro-life, with the exceptions of rape, incest, and life of the mother
Wants to regain jobs he believes the U.S. has lost to other countries
What students are saying: “He’s good with money and can manage the national budget well, so we won’t go into anymore debt. He’ll also take care of the immigration problem that Obama isn’t dealing with.” –Jake Guchenrider, freshman


Bernie Sanders: Democrat 

Who is he? Vermont senator and democratic socialist
Immigration: Will push for immigration with the strong belief that all people should be unified
Gun Control: Wants to close the gun control loophole for good by enforcing background checks and keeping military weapons out of the hands of the general public
Environment: Believes climate change is the biggest threat facing the world and must be acted upon immediately. Plans to cut carbon pollution by 80 percent and move towards sustainable energy sources
Economy/jobs: Would invest $1 trillion into rebuilding the workforce and opening up job positions for millions
Education: Would make tuition free at public colleges
What students are saying: “I think some of his ideas are too extreme to put into action. I do like that he wants to break up big business and that he promotes race equality and equal pay for equal work.” –Amelia Davis, senior


Marco Rubio: Republican

Who is he? Florida Senator
Immigration: Wants to increase border security/gain control over illegal immigration
Gun Control: Believes crimes are committed not by guns, but by the people who possess them. His opinion is that executive orders against guns defy the Second Amendment
Environment: Doesn’t believe climate change is the biggest threat to our world by any means. He would reverse plans like the Clean Power Plan because they are too costly to the economy
Abortion: Believes human life begins at conception, and supports any legislation that limits abortion
Economy/jobs: Wants to create the best economy in the world with the best paying jobs in the world and opposes minimum wage increase
What students are saying: “He seems like a pretty calm guy. He’s fairly conservative, and I find myself feeling able to trust him. As far as the other Republican candidates go, they kind of give me the creeps.” –Darren Armstrong, senior