Presidential Election 2016

By Samson Tamijani

The most polarizing election of recent memory is almost upon us, and soon it will be time to see which direction the country takes. People all over the country will be heading to the polls and exercising their right to democratically elect their choice for president, congressman, senator, and so on. But don’t let the hype fool you, it’s not all about who has the healthiest, loudest, richest, or the most scandalous coverage on TV. Of the four (yes, four) parties represented on ballots in almost all 50 states, all four present very differing plans in how to lead the country in the next four years.

All too often college students forget how important their vote is, especially considering just a small fraction of eligible youth voted in the previous general election. The truth is that the 90+ million diverse citizens of the “millennial generation,” as we’re often called, actually outnumber “baby-boomers,” the generation where most of our principals, bosses, coaches, professors and politicians come from. And so it will be the millennials who are going to be the engineers, bosses, teachers, and coaches who lead the USA, and live through the long run of the effects from the next set of lawmakers that will soon take office. Therefore, it would undoubtedly be highly effective if the 28+ percent of the US population we make up participates in this election.

And to go with Election Day on Tuesday, November 8, students need to remember that early voting and absentee voting are available in the weeks leading up to the big day. If you registered to vote in another state, you may choose to fill out an absentee ballot to your home state or just use your student address to register in Iowa, which is an important swing state when deciding the race for the White House. Iowa voter registration ends on Saturday, October 29.

Ordered alphabetically by their affiliated party, here are the presidential candidates:


DEMOCRAT: Hillary Clinton / Tim Kaine

Previous Experience: Secretary of State under the Obama administration, US Senator to New York, and as First Lady.

Her running mate, Kaine, is a US senator to Virginia, and has previously served as governor of Virginia.

Platform xillari-klinton02.jpg

Increasing the minimum wage

Eliminating public college tuition pay for low income students

Expanding renewable energy production

Reducing ground troops in overseas conflict

Expanding the Affordable Healthcare Act

Expanding funding for reproductive health services

Expanding gun control 

GREEN: Dr. Jill Stein / Ajamu Baraka

Previous Experience: Stein is a prominent environmental-health advocate, physician, 2012 presidential candidate for the Green Party and twice the former candidate for governor of Massachusetts.

Her running mate, Baraka, is a prominent human rights activist and Vietnam war veteran.

Platform 35775_lg.jpg

In favor of a total dependability on renewable energy by 2030

Free public college tuition for all students

Socialized healthcare

Decriminalization of marijuana

Decreasing the military budget

Citizenship to undocumented immigrants

Expanding gun control

LIBERTARIAN: Gary Johnson / William Weld

Previous Experience: Johnson is a former governor of New Mexico, represented the Libertarian Party in the 2012 presidential election, and currently serves as CEO of Cannabis Sativa Inc., a company that aims to sell medicinal cannabis.

His running mate, Weld, was governor of Massachusetts in the 1990s and a former US Senate candidate.


Advocates for deregulation of all major government

Elimination of government student loans

Decreasing military action and funding

Elimination of federal wage standard

Decriminalization of marijuana

Abolishing federal gun control



REPUBLICAN: Donald Trump / Mike Pence

Previous Experience: Trump is a businessman, television personality, defendant in court and author.

His running mate, Pence, is the current governor of Indiana and a former US congressman.


In favor of deregulated insurance markets

Current student loan markets

Deportation of undocumented immigrants

Expansion of domestic fossil fuels production

Deployment of troops in Middle East

Abolishing same-sex marriage

Abolishing federal gun control


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