Our two-party political system has never served us so poorly as it has this year. We are faced with the certainty that the majority of Americans will be dissatisfied with the results of the election, no matter who wins.
Nonetheless, the obligation for us — each of us — to vote is one of the most essential foundations of democracy. So choose I must, no matter how distasteful may be the options.
I believe that there are three fundamental considerations as we contemplate a presidential candidate: Character, competence, and basic position on the key issues.
When I think of character, Hillary is a mixture of good and bad. There is an air of corruption about her history, so I would give her a grade only of C. On the other hand, trump is utterly without any moral compass at all and has a long, very public history of demeaning people. He has not only been a corrupter of others but has openly boasted about it. I would give him far less than an F.
In terms of competence, Hillary has had a wide variety of experiences in the realm of public service and most certainly would be quite competent. trump has had very little breadth of experience and as a businessman seems far more a crook than a success. He functions like a dictator, making everyone either his enemy or his servant. Hillary gets an A while trump again gets an F.
In terms of policies, Hillary is more to the left than I would like to be while trump is simply nowhere. I suspect he actually doesn’t know just what a policy is, since he lives only by irrational whims. She gets a B while he again gets an F.
So in my book Hillary gets an overall grade of B while trump scores an absolute zero and gets an F.
Having said that, I want to add two ideas. One, I thoroughly agree that Washington needs a substantial change but we’re not going to get it from this election. Two, I believe we are placing far, far too much emphasis upon the presidential election. It is not the president but the congress that is our real problem in Washington. We elect poor quality leaders and then complain when they perform exactly the way we ought to have known they would.
Washington needs to change but the blame does not lie in Washington but in the local voting booths. That’s where the revolution must begin.