Since 2016, many Americans have held their breath with distaste for the current administration. Not that this is particularly unique of this administration, but it’s worthy of exploration because President Donald Trump is one of the first presidents to inspire the sort of polarization that we currently witness in politics. From a straight on perspective, the Democratic debates up to this point have had one goal in mind – determining who can run away from Trump the fastest. The positions to be taken on this issue aren’t directly related to who the best candidate may or may not be. Rather, the importance is if the eventual president will be elected by virtue of their distance from Trump or their true merit for office.
Obviously, from a layman’s perspective, both of these facts hold true. There is a reason why Bernie Sanders is currently in the lead in the Democratic Primary, as opposed to any of the more centrist candidates. The prevalent political strategy has been to vote for the more centrist candidate in the primary election so that there is the best chance of attracting moderate voters who don’t vote along party lines.
This trend is not revealing itself this time around which begins one down the line of questioning whether or not running from the political ideals which Trump holds is a viable route to becoming the president-elect.
The Sanders campaign strategy has radically ran away from centrist liberal ideology to endorse more Democratic socialist ideals and get them onto a presidential debate stage. He wants to engage all of the folks who have grown so disinterested in politics because of Trump and motivate a base, which arguably didn’t exist in 2016, to come out and vote.
Many experienced political analysts would give a hard vote against this strategy, but this seems to be indicative of a larger trend which might be able to be stated plainly. Whoever is the farthest from Trump has the best chance of beating Trump.
Most political analysts argue that Trump wants Sanders to take the Democratic nomination so that he is able to make the presidential race one of capitalism versus socialism. This is a clearly bastardized understanding of how political races operate, but that doesn’t make it essentially untrue.
The latest round of debates centered on Mike Bloomberg, the candidate who is arguably the most Trumpesque. He was attacked for being another old white man who was well-funded and has represented shaky moral standings his entire life. This can be attributed to how Bloomberg, as mayor of New York City, legitimized stop and frisk policies, which were definitively agreed upon as a method of policing that incentivized discrimination by officers of the law. Bloomberg has been attempting to run away from this policy initiated under his leadership, but this left him open to attacks on his contradictory political stances.