This presidential election is something unusual this season. Both candidates, Republican and Democrat, are stigmatized as possessing a level of dishonesty, a history of lies, and a tendency to misinformation that is unfit for the highest office of the United States. Politicians are not known for their honesty, but American history has never seen such a low bar in the presidential race. Senator Hillary Clinton has lied under oath on multiple occasions, while Donald J. Trump’s confused public statements and opaque rhetoric only obfuscate the sheer number of untruths he tells. Mr. Trump has yet to provide his income tax returns to the public, which has been an accepted standard of financial transparency put into practice by presidential contestants for generations.
America’s political divide has at last been bridged, but only by bipartisan distrust for both candidates. The American liberal world order looks about to plunge into dark political waters with the 2016 race for the White House.
Hillary Clinton has based much of her political capital as a candidate on her time as Secretary of State, but her handling of Col. Gaddafi’s ousting, the Benghazi attacks, and Russia during her tenure has tarnished her image. Donald Trump, on the other hand, asserts he will fix the “rigged” politics in Washington, but while Mr. Trump’s rhetoric might appeal to Americans who want a new generation of politicians, he has fallen short on numerous other issues.
Senator Clinton’s scandals over classified emails and their deletion have generated serious doubts about her trustworthiness, which has yet to diminish. Further, allegations about millions of dollars from foreign donors to her husband’s Clinton Foundation being misappropriated ignited uproar among her critics. Her opponent, however, may set the record for being the most disliked presidential candidate in history.
Neither candidates’ claims have ushered in broad optimism, and their track records are a disgrace to the nation as a whole. Many voters are simply unenthusiastic about both candidates.
While Clinton has basically promoted herself as a third term of Obama, American voters have seldom chosen the same party for a third term. Nonetheless, businessman-cum-politician Donald J. Trump has consistently failed to demonstrate that he possesses the ethical sense necessary for an American president, as recent revelations about the possibly illegal actions of his charity demonstrate. Other candidates, from the Libertarian Party and Green Party, have not earned enough credibility in the presidential race to be true contenders.
The election this year marks a major departure from the usual state of affairs. Voter sentiments are reaching a level of political impasse seldom seen in America. The choice between a known and an unknown evil, so to speak, is not inspiring, yet voters must now scrutinize these two candidates and send one to the White House.
— Probir Kumar Sarka