The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

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Election 2024: Who will be your next president?

Evelyn+Pierce%2C+Graphics+Manager+%2F+The+Bucknellian
Evelyn Pierce, Graphics Manager / The Bucknellian

 

There is so much and yet so little to be said about the 2024 Presidential Election. Candidates on either side of the mainstream aisle–that is, Republican and Democrat–are lacking in many regards; they are all simply more of what we have already had. Incumbent candidate Trump is all but guaranteed the GOP nomination according to FiveThirtyEight’s latest polling numbers, and the same can be said for President Biden on the Democratic side. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis never stood a chance, but Nikki Haley, Former Ambassador to the United Nations under the Trump administration, seems to be retaining a notable amount of hope after the New Hampshire Primary put her in a close second to the former President just last week. 

As a novel win via write-in campaign, President Biden is the only Democratic candidate on everyone’s minds, but what of all of the underwritten third-party candidates? Running as independents, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Cornel West could not be more opposite from one another. RFK, Jr. is progressive in many social aspects, yet stands steadfast in his belief that children must be protected from chronic diseases; he has publicly blamed vaccines for causing Autism despite hard evidence by many scientists refuting this claim (See: National Institute of Health on vaccine myths and controversies). Cornel West is a staunch advocate for freedom and equity among the American people–instituting a wealth tax, codifying reproductive rights including abortion and mandatory paid family leave among other items, ceasing oil and naturalgas leasing projects and more. Before he became an independent, however, he was the preferred Green Party candidate and Jill Stein worked his campaign.

Since West switched his affiliation status back in October, Stein has become the Green Party’s leading candidate as she had been in both the 2012 and 2016 election cycles. Running on a platform of climate action and a broad outlook in almost every other aspect of the political sphere, she very obviously lacks the experience required to lead the so-called “free world,” but who is to say what “lacking experience and know-how” really means after the 2016 election of former President Trump – a candidate no one thought would win but everyone decided to vote for because they just wanted something new. Maybe what we really needed back then, and what we really need now, is a Socialist. 

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While Bernie Sanders long reigned as the ideal of socialist US politics because of his “radical” plans to implement free healthcare, the 2024 candidate for the Party for Socialism and Liberation, Claudia de la Cruz, “plans to seize control of the top 100 US corporations and disband the CIA” according to an interview conducted by the Guardian earlier this month. Backed by the truth, that “nothing that we have earned as working-class people in society has been something that has been granted to us by the benevolence of the ruling class: not voting rights, not access to the most basic human rights,” she is both the youngest candidate and the only one running on a total overturn of the US political and economic systems as we know it. Unfortunatelty, overthrowing capitalism will take a substantial movement– fewer Americans view it favorably than did in 2019. Admittedly, to hope for a complete shift from everything that America is and has been for hundreds of years is almost foolish, but I cannot help but think that such a shift is becoming inevitable. 

Many Americans lack the desire to even watch election coverage as the race progresses. Fewer people watched coverage of the Iowa Caucus than in 2020, and that number was no match for 29 million people who chose to watch the Emmys on the same night. In other words, despite the imposing narrative that this is the most important election of our lives, a narrative that has been pushed in every election cycle since the dawn of radio and television, few care to watch while the same people rematch for a second term – one that will likely be worse no matter which candidate comes out on top.

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