The 2016 Campaign And Election
It is normally very difficult to point out a given factor that really matters in this year’s campaign and elections because there are so many factors that may seem to matter but after a clear scrutiny, they may not matter at all. Politicians are human beings who have the capability to camouflage depending on their situations. For instance, a politician will make a statement depending on the wants on the beliefs and values of his/her target audience or in order to justify his/her predicament or actions. As a political science student, it is normally very easy to become confused on the matters that actually matter in any campaign and election period. I would argue in this essay that polarization within the Republican Party has proved to be detrimental to them in the 2016 campaign.
American politics has been for several decades dependent on the GOP. A political party is expected to discourage cases of compromise; dismiss the legitimacy of its political opponents; extremely ideological and be able to conventionally understand its science, evidence and even facts. This is the mainstream that both Democratic Party and Republican Party are expected to adhere to. However, in the 2016 campaign it is evident that Republican Party has failed to adhere to this mainstream and this will make it nearly impossible for a political system that will be established once the elections are finalized to be incapable of dealing with the country’s challenges constructively. Democratic Party is not exceptional in the polarization practice except that their counterpart Republican Party has gone overboard as far as the issue is concerned in the American politics.
The first factor to consider when determining how the GOP has undergone polarization by Republican Party in the 2016 campaign and election, is partisan Antipathy. In as much as polarization of GOP has been experienced for a very long time in American politics, but the current scenario seems to affect the members and leaders of the Republican Party immensely.
According to the pew research studies, in the 2016 campaign and election 43 percent of Republicans have unfavorable feeling towards the GOP. Consequently they have negative opinion towards opposing party. The policies of the Republican Party are misguided in nature they conduct their campaigns and this pauses threat to the well being of the nation as a whole.
In this year’s campaign alone, approximately 66 percent of the Republicans believe that the policies of the Democrats threaten the well-being of the nation. I want to argue that partisan antipathy has caused many republicans to concentrate on the congressional elections than the presidential election. It would be very difficult for any Republican Party presidential candidate to sail through the Electoral College in this year’s election because of partisan apathy. Donald Trump has made the situation even tougher for him to win the Electoral College right because of the negative comments he has been saying aimlessly throughout his campaign period. For instance, he said he would depot all the Muslims and Africans back to their origin countries. He went ahead to suggest that once elected as the United States president he would build a wall along the Mexico-America border and depot the Mexican migrants back to their country. These comments have negatively affected the GOP of the American politics.
The voter outreach and mobilization that has been conducted by the Republican Party has been to a greater extent undergone polarization. There is a big difference on how the Republicans are conducting their congressional and presidential campaigns. They show a lot of emphasis on the congressional campaigns because they have learnt they stand a lesser chance in winning the Electoral College rights in the 2016 elections. Republicans have taken a greater interest in the Senate because through garnering majority in the Senate House they would be able to control most of the house businesses and policies.
Republican Party through polarization has continued to decrease its political engagement and even create suspicion on the legitimacy of the American electoral system. Going by the recent claim by Donald Trump that they would not lose election in the Pennsylvania unless the election is rigged in favor of the Democratic Party show how polarization has affected the GOP.
Despite the Republicans, especially Donald Trump showing confidence that they would win the 2016 elections, it is true that they have shown the personal side of polarization. It will not be a surprise to any political scientist to when the Republicans are defeated by the Democrats in both presidential and congressional election of 2016 and they come out to blame the American electoral system. This is due to highest level of polarization that they have successfully championed for in their 2016 campaigns across America.
There are some things that are done by the Republicans behind the scenes as far as polarization is concerned that can be hardly noticed. According to pew recent reports, higher percentage of Republicans are not happy when their family members want to get married Democrats. The personal side of polarization is exhibited by republicans even at the family level. Republican Party is poised to suffer a detrimental blow in case its members continue exhibit polarization.
The next thing has caused a shift in the GOP of the American politics is the ideological inconsistency by the Republican Party. Republican Party has exhibited ideological polarization in a higher rate compared to the Democratic Party. GOP ideological polarization has shifted to the worst courtesy of the Republican Party. It is however; wrong to claim that Democratic Party has not contributed towards the ideological polarization in the 2016 campaign and elections.
Republicans for a very long time have remained conservative while the Democrats have remained liberal. In the 2016 campaign and election, republican leaders and members have been very explosive on the social issues. These actions have polarized the American political systems making several Americans to despite the Republican Party candidates.
Republican Party is not only likely to lose the votes of the minority in the 2016 elections but it is also some states that have been known to be neutral. However, due to ideological polarization which has affected the GOP of the American electoral system, even the states that have for a long time never voted for the Democratic Party are likely to vote for them this time round.
Members of the Republican Party have not learnt from the loss in the polls that they suffered in both months of August and November instead they have continued with their acts of polarization. Democrats have maintained the lead in the 2016 campaigns and some indicators still suggest that the Republicans will lose the presidential elections. These elements do not show any importance to the Republicans because they have shifted their efforts towards winning the congressional elections. This effort will bear not fruit because most Americans are keen in maintaining their GOP.
It is interesting to note that Democrats have however realized that for them to win both presidential and congressional elections they have to be more liberal and inclusive. They aim at reducing polarization at all cost. They have also invested towards campaigning in regions that have been deemed to be strongholds of the Republicans. For instance, Hillary Clinton, a presidential candidate for the Democratic Party has spent a lot of time campaigning in Georgia despite the fact that it is a republican stronghold state. There is an obvious question that any political science student has to ask him/herself at this level; what has Republican members and leaders done to unlock the votes that are claimed by the Democratic Party or what has they done to lock their votes from their opponents.
The demographics of the American society are constantly changing and there are implications that come up with them. Polarization perfected the Republicans in the 2016 campaigns has so far succeeded in voter ceiling. Lack of campaign organization is playing a very important role in causing the Republican Party to keep losing in the current polls. The decision by the Republican Party to neglect the presidential elections and concentrate in the congressional elections does not only show how desperate in the 2016 elections but also how disorganized their campaigns strategies are. It is high time Republicans stop polarization and concentrate in making a turnaround in the 2016 campaign and election.