Now more than ever it seems like there is a large distrust of government and elected officials. People are angry, but more importantly, people are scared. Republicans decry the acts of President Obama and the passing of the Affordable Care Act. They have openly threatened (and are currently following through with that threat) to not hear the president’s nominee for the Supreme Court vacancy. Democrats, for their part, have been equally unwilling to work in a bipartisan fashion. All of this bickering and distrust is a consequence of the narrowing race for the presidential nominee.
While neither the Republicans nor the Democrats are in the right on every issue, the voters should think twice before choosing an “anti-establishment” candidate. If you think Congress and the president aren’t doing enough now, wait until a candidate with little to no political experience is elected. The idea of being against the establishment is mere propaganda to gain votes. Donald Trump claims to be outside the establishment of politics (even though he has given money to several candidates), but what if the Republican National Committee starts to support him? Is he still not part of the establishment? If he is elected president, is he part of the establishment then? The tag “anti-establishment” is only used in the run for the nomination because at a certain point, every elected official must become experienced, and thus part of the establishment.
People all over the United States are upset with Washington, D.C., and are trying to send a message by backing these so called “anti-establishment” candidates. Ted Cruz, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders all hail under this title and have used it to gain popularity. But is this really what is best for the United States? Are people who openly claim to be separate from the establishment the people we want to work for us? No. The person elected president should have extensive experience in the public sector and have made connections he or she can use for the good of the American people. Having extensive knowledge of the inner workings of government doesn’t make you an insider; it makes you effective.
The office of the president, in its simplest form, is just a job. You are paid a salary, take vacations and have certain obligations to fulfill. Like any other job, a person should be qualified and experienced to apply for this position. However, this year’s primaries and caucuses have been systematically weeding out those most qualified and most experienced to be the next president of the United States. The public is left with the remaining options: Sen. Cruz, largely disliked by his colleagues for not working well with others; Donald Trump, a wealthy businessman who throws out empty promises and incites rage within his supporters; Gov. Kasich, who most people wonder why he is still running being that his following is slim; Hillary Clinton, largely distrusted and haunted by allegations about Benghazi; and finally Sen. Bernie Sanders, the democratic socialist who has promised to give the American people all the free stuff we could possibly want.
Has government really become that corrupt that we turn to such radical hopefuls like Sanders or Cruz? I don’t think so. The party is blamed on both sides for supporting an “establishment” candidate over an outsider, but why? If the American people are honestly ready to nominate a businessman with no political experience to the most important office in the United States, I think America needs all the help it can get. Being part of the “Washington establishment” does not mean you are corrupt; it means you are experienced.
Will Yepez studies political science. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @TheSagebrush.