A crowded field of candidates vies for the White House
a continuing rendezvous with destiny. Each American and the country we cherish.”
The presidential election of 2016 dominated politics in 2015, which was ending with three Democrats and 14 Republicans running for the Oval Office.
Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley joined the Democratic race on May 30, saying the “American dream seems for so many of us to be hanging by a thread.”
U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, a Democratic socialist from Vermont, officially entered the race on May 26 and continued to run hard for the nomination as the cycle shifts into election season.
Addressing “brothers and sisters” in his announcement, Sanders said, “We begin a political revolution to transform our country economically, politically, socially and environmentally. Today, we stand here and say loudly and clearly that ‘Enough is enough.’ This great nation and its government belong to all of the people and not to a handful of billionaires, their super PACs and their lobbyists.”
On the Republican side, today’s front-runner entered an already crowded race for the party’s nomination with these words: “Wow. Whoa.”
Tycoon and TV personality Donald Trump announced his candidacy at Trump Tower in New York City in June with a blistering critique of President Barack Obama and a vow to build a “great, great wall” on the border with Mexico.
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people,” Trump said in his first official campaign statement.
For the rest of the year, Trump continued to stir outrage with bizarre behavior and statements that have not been heard in U.S. presidential politics since before the Civil Rights era. As the year ended, the Republican establishment was quaking at the prospect of fielding a candidate who comes off as a playground bully. GOP leaders already are preparing for a brokered convention.
Meanwhile, Clinton’s camp is enjoying every minute of it.
Yet, with each offense Trump commits, his support among Republican voters grows stronger.
Trump’s bombastic style crowded out a number of other hopefuls, including Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.
Walker launched his campaign in Waukesha with the opening remark, “I love America,” and a predictable speech about baseball, Boy Scouts, Vietnam, God and country.
The governor sought to capitalize on his popularity with tea partiers for his assaults in Wisconsin on public sector unions, reproductive choice, gun restrictions and voting rights. But Walker seemed to disappear on the debate stage, faded in the polls and saw his donations dwindle.
Walker withdrew from the presidential race on Sept. 21 and, after many absences from the governor’s mansion, returned to Wisconsin with a $1 million campaign debt. He still owes the state $67,280 for security costs that taxpayers provided him during his travels.
By December, the GOP field was down to Jeb Bush, Ben Carson. Chris Christie. Ted Cruz, Carly Fiorina, Jim Gilmore, Lindsey Graham, Mike Huckabee, John Kasich, George Pataki, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Rick Santorum and Trump.