2016 Presidential Election

Anti-Trump Protest Fatigue: Longing for National Equanimity

Donald Trump and Mike Pence

(Photo Credit: NBC)

Donald J. Trump is President-elect of the United States of America, and he will be the 45th President of the United States of America. Face it. Calm down. Composing Facebook posts and tweets expressing anger and disappointments about Trump’s victory will not change this reality and will not accomplish anything meaningful. An inauthentic hyper-religious commitment to prayer, fasting, and depending on God will not mollify Trump-related apprehensions and disenchantments. Destroying public and private property and businesses in your cities will not end the racism, hatred, homophobia, xenophobia and other forms of discrimination you resist. If you want a different election result, then heed the advice President Obama gave to Republicans after he won in 2012: “Go out and win an election.”

Are numerous people going to have public meltdowns every time an election does not go their way? Are we always going to be so partisan to the point we never enact significantly beneficial policy again? Are we always going to be in election-season?

How did Trump win this election? Those interested in him becoming president voted for him. Those who did not desire for Hillary Clinton to become president vote against her and for him. They organized and did not just craft Facebook posts and tweets. They did not riot; they voted.

This election was the most nasty, mean-spirited one in American history. It’s over, thankfully.

At some point, we must come together for the common good. Why not now? Do we have to wait until heartbroken folks exhaust themselves with reckless protesting and rioting?

If you want a new president in 2020, then stop complaining on Facebook and Twitter and organize with other like-minded voters. Develop a plan about how to get voters to the polls who will elect a person you desire to win the presidency. I can guarantee you that busting out windows at Walgreens and CVS will not elect the president you want.

Do you desire for your candidate to win the next election? Go to the polls and take everyone you know with you in 2020.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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FBI Director Comey Caves to Clinton, Obama, and Democrats

Hillary Clinton

(Photo Credit: Business Insider)

How can over 650,000 emails pertaining to the FBI’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s illegal private email server be reviewed in just a few days? Under intense pressure from Hillary Clinton, her campaign, President Obama, his administration, and numerous Democrats, FBI Director James Comey caved. When Hillary Clinton, her campaign, and many other Democrats started accusing Comey of attempting to influence this election, he didn’t want to be perceived as secretly working to elect Donald Trump. What’s becoming increasingly clear is the American government is corrupt and the American people cannot place any faith in it.

A truly independent, non-partisan special counsel needs to conduct a formal investigation into the agency’s handling of the affairs involving Clinton’s illegal private email server and the Clinton Foundation.

Although Comey has promulgated that the review of Clinton’s email server is complete, and he will not recommend criminal charges be brought against her, the agency’s investigation of the Clinton Foundation continues.

For those Democrats alleging that Comey is acting in a partisan way to elect Donald Trump, it will be interesting to see if they have substantive concerns about this premature announcement two days before the 2016 presidential election. Most, if not all, of the same Democrats criticizing Comey praised him several months ago when he first made the determination not to recommend criminal charges be brought against Clinton.

If Hillary Clinton is elected President of the United States of America on November 8, 2016, then the American people better prepare themselves for more legitimate investigations of her that will last her entire four years in office.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton: America Deserves Better

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton

(Photo Credit: Salon)

Are Americans really about to elect a carnival barker, Donald Trump, or crook, Hillary Clinton, as President of the United States of America? If this happens, the American people will only have themselves to blame—not Donald Trump, not Hillary Clinton. Without a miracle, handcuffs for Hillary, or a delegate revolt against Trump at the GOP Convention in Cleveland, this nation is headed for more doom and gloom. An alternative exists for conscientious voters: rally behind a third-party candidate. Neither current candidate offers the essential vision our country needs. The time is right for a third-party to rise and challenge this antiquated two-party system.

Do we really want to elect a woman, Hillary Clinton, who views black boys and men as “superpredators”? Do we really want to elect a woman, Hillary Clinton, who changes her mind with the wind on the critical issues confronting our nation? Do we really want to elect a man, Donald Trump, who desires to ban all Muslims from entering our country? Do we really want to elect a man, Donald Trump, who mocks individuals with disabilities? Hopefully, the answer is no.

As the #NeverTrump and #WhichHillary movements continue to gain traction, a serious third-party candidate saving us from these two catastrophes, Clinton and Trump, could emerge. These two movements, however, must bear fruit: people uniting behind a single candidate who can defeat both Clinton and Trump.

Don’t allow people to condemn you into maintaining loyalty to your current political party. If you’re not happy with person who secures your party’s nomination, it’s not mandatory to vote for him or her. Vote for a third-party candidate who better reflects your values and who offers a better future for America. Even if you decide to return to your present political party the next election cycle, a powerful message still will be communicated: your vote isn’t automatic.

Ideally, this third-party candidate would be someone who could resonate with enough Democrats, Republicans and Independents. With three people essentially running for president, this third-party candidate would be able to win the presidency, forever giving Americans faith in third-party candidates.

Too many precious lives and treasure have been sacrificed to enfranchise Americans, especially blacks and women, for people to stay at home as a form of “protest.” A more productive form of protest is to evince that the two-party system isn’t here to stay and that the American people have an option beyond this system. The only real statement you make by not voting is a callous disregard for the great sacrifices that have been made to empower you with the right to vote. Think thoroughly about this before you resolve to sit at home foolishly pretending you’re doing something “revolutionary” by not voting.

Begin to join with others who reject Trump and Clinton to discuss possible candidates to support for a third-party run against them. You will ultimately need to agree on one candidate to draft and/or support.

Let’s start an authentic political revolution by transitioning our country to a three-party system. We desperately need an alternative to our extant two-party system.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Donald Trump’s Dangerous Proposed Ban on Muslims Entering America

Donald Trump

(Photo Credit: CNBC)

Donald Trump has proposed a ban on all Muslims entering America, and this couldn’t be a more dangerous threat to religious liberty in the land of the free and home of the brave. From its inception, America has been a nation of immigrants. All people living in this country are immigrants except Native Americans. Trump’s proposal would impose a religious litmus test on those seeking to become citizens and on those desiring to travel to our country. How can Republicans, passionate champions of religious freedom, continue to approve a man undermining this important freedom like no one ever in American history? Although Trump has provided the 2016 presidential campaign with entertainment, it’s time to end his reality television version of a presidential campaign.

We face serious threats from terrorists foreign and domestic. This isn’t the time for a comedy show; it’s time for authentic leadership. While Mr. Trump doesn’t have the support of a majority of Republicans, he’s receiving the highest percentage of support in this crowded field. Even in a crowded field, Trump’s reckless policies and positions should prevent him from being the Republican frontrunner. Will the Republican Party be comfortable with being labeled “the anti-religious liberty Party”? Well, that’s exactly the message it will send by keeping Trump as its frontrunner and making him the Republican presidential nominee.

In response to Mr. Trump’s radical Muslim policy, former Vice President Dick Cheney stated the following: “Well I think this whole notion of that somehow we need to say no more Muslims and just ban a whole religion goes against everything we stand for and believe in. I mean religious freedom’s been a very important part of our, our history.” I couldn’t agree more with Vice President Cheney. Cheney’s remarks underscore my argument about Trump’s assault on religious liberty, and they emphasize how Trump’s Muslim policy threaten the fundamental values and principles responsible for America being an exceptional nation.

How can you believe in the idea of American exceptionalism and bar all Muslims from entering America?

Our efforts to aggressively combat terrorism shouldn’t ever come at the cost of erasing core American liberties, values and principles. I love America and believe we should employ all responsible measures to protect the homeland. Imposing a ban on all Muslims wishing to enter America will only embolden extant terrorists and buttress the campaign to recruit new terrorists. Trump’s policy gives radical Islamic terrorists the false evidence of America’s hatred of Islam they need to proliferate their malevolent propaganda through various mediums.

What a sophomoric and discriminatory homeland and national security strategy: ban all Muslims from America to keep the nation safe. Seriously? True evidence that Trump is a joke of a presidential candidate. The joke, unfortunately, is being maliciously played on our country.

Republican voters have the power to end this cruel joke today.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Republicans Need Chris Christie to Win in 2016

Governor Chris Christie

(Photo Credit: The Washington Post)

If Republicans are serious about winning the White House in 2016, then they need to rally around New Jersey Governor Chris Christie right now. Although Hillary Clinton has not formally promulgated that she will run for the presidency in 2016, any clear thinking American already knows that she will run. Clinton is a formidable candidate for any of her Republican challengers.  At the present time, there’s no candidate who can defeat Clinton save Governor Chris Christie.  While Governor Christie may not be as conservative as many ultraconservative Republicans would like, he’s a reliable conservative Republican who can actually win the presidency in 2016.  It does Republicans no good to nominate an ultraconservative candidate like Rand Paul or Ted Cruz who has no chance of defeating Hillary Clinton.

Popular conservative pundits like Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh need to capitalize on the great opportunity they have to rally Republicans behind the only candidate who can defeat Hillary Clinton. Investing too much time in discourses about whether Governor Christie is conservative enough or a RINO (Republican in Name Only) is fruitless. He has a proven conservative record, even as governor of a blue state.  A conservative Republican who can appeal widely to Democrats, Independents and Republicans can win against Hillary Clinton in 2016.

While America is still a fundamentally conservative country, it is becoming less conservative than it was during the Reagan Revolution.  The Republican Party, therefore, has to recognize that it cannot fashion itself in the same likeness of the Party of the 1980s.  Governor Christie will help to lead the Republican Party in the direction it needs to go to begin winning presidential elections again.  Nominating Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, or Mike Huckabee would evince to the American people that the Republican Party is not ready to embrace the political realities of a post-1980s America.  The political milieu President Reagan enjoyed is gone.  Being too consumed by nostalgia for the days of Reagan only stifles the progress that’s needed for Republicans to take back the White House.

Although the days of Reagan are long gone, wide support for limited government, personal responsibility, pro-growth policies, low taxes, and local control is still present.  Republicans don’t, therefore, have to abandon their core principles to win elections.  They simply need to be more flexible on certain issues, including immigration reform, and they must focus less on social issues and have a more compassionate tone on divisive social issues like gay marriage and abortion.

Governor Christie opposes gay marriage and is pro-life.  He does not, however, let his positions on those aforementioned issues define who he is.  He favors pragmatism over ideology.  As Republicans are struggling nationally to get African-Americans, Hispanics, and young voters to vote for their candidates, Governor Christie proved that he could get enough of these voters to win the presidency over Hillary Clinton.  As a blue state Republican governor, Christie can market himself as someone who has a proven record of reaching across the political aisle to work with Democrats, Republicans and Independents to get things done to ameliorate the lives of Americans.

While many Republicans were upset with Governor Christie for working with President Obama to deliver aid to the denizens of New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy, Christie demonstrated to the nation that he is more concerned with his constituents than playing politics.  Independents and some Democrats will be impressed with Christie’s bipartisanship and will reward him with their vote for President.  Hillary Clinton is less known for bipartisanship; she’s known nationally for being a reliable liberal Democrat, which makes her more of a polarizing figure than Christie.  She has more name recognition than Christie, considering she’s been First Lady, Secretary of State, and U.S. Senator. President Clinton is still popular nationally, which will benefit his wife.  Christie’s national name recognition is constantly increasing, however.

Hillary Clinton will likely have to combat the anger of voters who are displeased with the economic performance of a Democratic President, President Obama.  Governor Christie can appear as a reasonable alternative to having another Clinton in office.  Yes, Clinton fatigue will help Governor Christie’s campaign for the presidency.  Many Americans are fed up with the destructive partisanship in Washington, D.C.  When they look at Chris Christie, they know they’re voting for someone who has a record of bipartisanship; a record that offers tremendous hope that Washington, D.C. can once again become a place where meaningful things can get done to improve the lives of the American people.

It was once widely thought that Republicans didn’t have the slightest chance to defeat Hillary Clinton, but too many people were focused on the wrong candidates.  The dominant focus should have always been on Governor Christie.  The polls are very close between Christie and Clinton, and one poll shows that Governor Christie not only wins against Clinton but also against all other popular potential Democratic candidates.

A Republican blue state governor could be much more attractive to more Americans than a reliable liberal former First Lady, Secretary of State, and U.S. Senator.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison