A race for the White House: an update on the 2016 presidential campaign

Story by Ty Smith, Staff Writer
Photo courtesy of Huffington Post 

A new year is here, and with it is another recap of the race for presidency. Neither party has selected a candidate yet, as both the Democrats and Republicans are still in their primaries. The Republicans will select a candidate on July 21, while the Democrats will select theirs on July 28. The Republicans held their latest debate on January 14 in South Carolina, where Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, John Kasich, Marco Rubio, and Donald Trump participated. The highlight of the debate was the breakdown of the relationship between Trump and Cruz. Rather than avoiding, the two denounced each other and spent most of their time attacking the other candidate.

Outside the debate, Trump has had a good week. According to the NBC/SurveyMonkey poll conducted on January 11-17, Trump holds a comfortable 38 percent of support. He also was officially endorsed by former Alaskan governor Sarah Palin on January 19. He has also recently begun attacking Ted Cruz over allegations that, due to the circumstances of his birth, Cruz cannot run for presidency.

Cruz holds 28 percent of support according to the latest poll, and has been focusing his campaign efforts in Iowa. Iowa is the first state to hold their caucus, and an important indicator in the primaries. Cruz is set to air an ad there, appearing with Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson.  He also insists that he is qualified to run for the presidency, despite Trump’s accusations of ineligibility.

Rubio continues to hold his position as third place candidate, garnering 11 percent in the polls. His super PAC has dropped $2.5 million dollars to air ads in Iowa and South Carolina. These ads are focused on attracting millennials, featuring a host of youth all stating why they are voting for Rubio.

Carson continues his decline in the polls, holding only 8 percent in the polls, far from his previous numbers, which once rivaled Trump’s. No other republican candidate holds more than 4 percent in the polls.  

The latest Democratic debate was held on January 18, and is the last debate before the first states begin voting in the Democratic primaries. Both Clinton and Sanders gave strong performances, with Clinton attacking Sanders on the topic of guns and taxes, and Sanders responding with comments about Clinton’s connections to Wall Street and history of compromise. According to the online viewer polls by Slate, Huffington Post, Politico, and NBC, Sanders won the debate, garnering at least 70 percent in each poll.

Clinton still leads in national polls, garnering 52 percent in the NBC/SurveyMonkey poll conducted January 11-17. However, her support among almost every group dropped, gaining support only among black and Latino voters. Further, polls in Iowa show Clinton only holding a narrow lead in that state. However, Clinton did receive an endorsement from Flint, Michigan mayor Karen Weaver. She has also called on Michigan governor Rick Snyder to ask for federal aid in order to assist in fixing the Flint water crisis.

Sanders continues to trail in the national polls, polling at 32 percent. However, he is Clinton’s closest competitor, with O’Malley polling at 1 percent. He is also closer to Clinton than ever, the latest NBC/SurveyMonkey poll being the first in which he trailed her by less than 20 points. In Iowa, Sanders pulled within 2 percentage points in the latest Des Moines Register poll released last week. In New Hampshire, the second state to vote in the Democratic primary, Sanders holds a comfortable 27 point lead over Clinton. According to CNN, Sanders polls at 60 percent in the state, while Clinton polls at 33 percent.

About the Writer…

Ty SmithTy Smith is from a small town located in the thumb of Michigan. He loves writing, reading, music, and video games. He also believes that cats are better than dogs.

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