2016 election Essay Example

Issues in the US 2016 Elections

Issues in the US 2016 Elections

The elections results of the United States held in 2016 produced the results that surprised many people (Janey 2016). Donald Trump, whom the members of his own Republican party described as classic authoritarian, was elected as the 45th American President. To some civil rights activists, Trump had trampled on American ideals enriched in the constitution by calling to limit the freedom of the press (Janey 2016). However, despite all agitations from those who did not support his election, lies fundamental issues that propelled Trump to Whitehouse. The declining number of the American middle-class has been around for more than 40 years, though it is the recovery that followed the financial crisis of 2008 that has massively shaken the American politics (Meyerson 2016). After -the collapse, the debt the American families accumulated in order to sustain their standard of living was called in. Americans who had lost their jobs and were above 50 years, were able to get some employment. Whereas the younger citizens, found it difficult to get employment that would enable them to move from their parent’s home and get their own place (Meyerson 2016). The past decades and recent economic challenges have shaken the United States politics and led to the election of a Republican president.

The Democrats’ failure to deliver impressive economic growth seven years after depression, worked against their reelection (Morath 2016). During President Obama’s rule, there have been some tremendous economic improvements. The country has witnessed a decrease in unemployment rate from 10% to 7.8% in 2009.Nonetheless, many Americans experienced a decrease in household income during the 8 years’ rule of President Obama (Casselman 2016). The Republicans used this opening in their campaign and won the election. In a recent debate, Republicans blamed the Democrats for the harsh economic realities such as, high level of inequality, stagnant wages and dragging economic growth (Casselman 2016). The Republicans promised the country that if elected, they will deliver a 4% economic growth and lift citizens out of poverty. However, the US economic crash came in 2008, but the citizens took so long to grasp the full economic dislocations it presented to them (Casselman 2016).

The 2008 economic crash’ aftermath and the 1929 crash aftermath might have been the same in terms of their effects (Meyerson 2016). But unlike in 1930s, in 2009, the government only struggled to keep the economy from falling into the deep hole. Nonetheless, the distractions and the citizens’ expectations that followed the depression pushed both the Democrats and the Republicans into unexplored challenges (Meyerson 2016). Just like in the 1930s, the new Democrats challenged the tenets of capitalism. The Republicans on the other side, discovered that downwardly mobile white employees provided provision to big entities. At such, they listened and supported the candidate who voiced their fury at the nation which is made up of multiracial individuals threatening to displace the white Americans (Meyerson 2016). Whether both parties still hold on to their initial ideals or not, is yet to be seen in the approaching conventions, both the Republican and Democrats will be facing the existential and definitional challenges. The Democrats in 1928 and 1936, and in 1964 and 1965 redefined their mission. The upcoming convention will show if they will again redefine their mission (Meyerson 2016).

The problems of American middle-class are not made-up but real issues. The male blue collar workers had a fruitful decade in 1950s (Thompson 2016). There was a high increase of 35% in union membership, with an increase in labor-participation rate among men in 1951. In the preceding year, unemployment rate reduced by 3% (Thompson 2016). Factories supplied washing machines and lawn mowers from their initial shrapnel and maintained a cheerful migration to the outskirts. All these developments happened in a closed economy (Thompson 2016). The American middle-class men without college degree, enjoyed those years. However, the 1968 election, the 1779 employment opportunities and the 2008 President Obama’s election, led to racial discrimination and economic dissatisfactions. This change of events acted was a recipe for Trump’s victory in 2016 elections (Thompson 2016).

 In the late 1960s, many southern whites left the Democrat party after President John Kennedy and President Johnson, struggled to extend the rights of black Americans (Thompson 2016). Politicians such as Richard Nixon in collaboration with others, succeeded to get the white votes by riding on their hatred against African Americans (Thompson 2016). Instead of calling to revoke the Civil Rights Acts, these Republican politicians, presented an economic agenda that was targeting to boost the whites at the cost of Africans (Thompson 2016). In the 1968 election, Nixon disguised his call against the black Americans in an economic angst language (Thompson 2016).

Although the Southern whites were racists in 1960s, the views disappeared after the proposal of Civil Rights Act in 1963 by Kennedy (Thompson 2016). Most of the white voters who were Democrats by then, defected to the Republican Party. That defection, directly explains the reduction of Democrats in Southern between the 1958 to 1980s (Thompson 2016). Also, the continued decrease of Democrats into 2000s, can be traced back to the Civil Rights Acts (Thompson 2016). Trump’s convincing GOP victory would not have occurred if it was not for his command of the states that still works with the Southern tactics (Thompson 2016). Trump was able to win an overall of 10 states out of the 11 confederate states. Trump could have easily won in the remaining state, Texas. But this was not possible because of Ted Cruz, who comes from Texas and Trump’s longtime rival. Trump has never called or campaigned on the basis of white superiority, but he was able to get the support of individuals like David Duke, who are white Americans supremacists (Thompson 2016).

The American 2016 election results have been shaped by economic challenges witnessed in the country in recent years. The Democrats inability to deliver impressive economic progress gave an opportunity to the Republicans to win the elections. However, the issues that featured in 2016 elections can be traced back to the period between 1930 to 1973.Most of the issues back then were concerned with the economic growth, employment and civil rights. In 2016 elections, the same issues have featured again, giving Trump a winning opportunity. The Americans in the Southern still vote on the basis of racial supremacy, this has still been demonstrated in 2016 elections. The government of America under President Trump’s leadership will need to sensitize Americans to vote on the basis of issues and not necessarily on the basis of race. The upcoming conventions should be used by both the Democrats and the Republicans to give new meaning and definitions of their parties. Those new missions the parties will adopt at the conventions, will define which party will carry the day in the future.


Casselman, Ben. 2016. «The Big Issues Of The 2016 Campaign». Fivethirtyeight. http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/year-ahead-project/#part1.

Janey, Richard. 2016. «Civics Education Failed To Instill Democratic Values In Students». The Atlantic. http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2016/11/is-trumps-victory-the-jump-start-civics-education-needed/507293/.

Meyerson, Harold. 2016. «The First Post-Middle-Class Election». The American Prospect. http://prospect.org/article/first-post-middle-class-election.

Morath, Eric. 2016. «Seven Years Later, Recovery Remains The Weakest Of The Post-World War II Era». WSJ. http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2016/07/29/seven-years-later-recovery-remains-the-weakest-of-the-post-world-war-ii-era/.

Thompson, Derek. 2016. «Donald Trump And The Twilight Of White America». The Atlantic. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/05/donald-trump-and-the-twilight-of-white-america/482655/.