Two things are necessary in order to successfully move any national candidacy forward. One is money. Money not only makes the "world go round" but it also buys media time, influence with the voting base and most importantly, enough of it can deter a rival candidate with less from their own candidacy. In this day and age, the one(s) with less money have a smaller political "life span". And as we all know, in today's modern political arenas, one needs a considerable "life span" in order to survive the current two (2) year ramp-up to the presidential elections. The second requirement is finding a position that resonates with the base of voters a candidate cultivates. In this case, taking extreme positions against either fellow candidates (of both parties) or policy objectives that are so extreme, they both resonate with certain voters or attract the attention of the media (which really holds the key to a successful candidacy). Examples of this can be seen in the extreme positions taken on Planned Parenthood and Abortion, Illegal Immigration, Welfare and...you get what I mean.
Yet the only way for the American public to truly appreciate the strategies employed by political candidates
is to understand their collective objectives. One who figuratively screams the loudest gets the attention from the media - which leads to the attention of the voters. Nothing highlights the role of the media as "Agenda Setters" more than political campaigns. For example, what would happen to the candidacy of Donald Trump if no one in the media, print or electronic, covered him? What would happen if Fox News never made Benghazi and emails their top priority against Clinton? Yet one thing is for certain when it comes to elections - public opinion is mercurial - it takes many shapes throughout the long campaign trail before it actually begins to take final form. As a result, we are a long, long way away from truly knowing who will be the ultimate candidates for the presidency.
Why else would I respond to questions about who will lead the ticket for the respective parties as "it all depends and we have a long way to go?" Why else would Donald Trump (currently leading in all GOP polls) publicly state that he wished the election was next month rather than next year? Because Trump knows the media and the public are fickle and public opinion polls based upon the media's setting of the agenda can change, and change rapidly over time.
So as we continue down the 2016 electoral path, it might be a good idea to remember the words of President John F. Kennedy who wrote; "Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future." Perhaps this election process would be more tolerable to the American People if current candidates remembered Kennedy's notion - that we are all in this election together. Let's try to remember that when it all comes to politics, because the next president needs to represent us all, not just their electoral base. Have a great week!