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Take Close Look at all 2016 Presidential Candidates

John E. Harmon Sr. | 8/5/2015, 4:13 p.m.
As we look toward the 2016 Presidential Election and the current campaign season, there are a number of issues in ...
John E. Harmon, Sr.

As we look toward the 2016 Presidential Election and the current campaign season, there are a number of issues in the public domain, both current and the not so distant past, which deserve your reflection and consideration.

First, the present; the Democratic party has put forth a short field of candidates, led by the former First Lady of the United States and subsequent Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Based on current public opinion, it appears that Mrs. Clinton has a great opportunity to become the Democratic nominee for the presidency. There is some whispering behind the scenes that Vice President Joseph R. Biden is considering a possible run, for the office as well. If Vice President Biden should enter the field, this may endanger Mrs. Clinton’s current frontrunner position in the recent polls. However, before I give my perspective on the Republican field, I encourage the black community to look beyond name recognition and focus on the record of each candidate, irrespective of party because by doing so, you will get a better indication of whose interests they really represent and the future impact of potential policies they may advocate for, or implement once elected.

In regards to the Republican Party, all that I can say at this time is, they have broad representation and some of the candidates bring an interesting perspective, platform and should be given earnest consideration, notwithstanding.

Now, let’s take a look at Former President William Jefferson Clinton, a man who many heralded as “the first Black President”. Candidate Clinton, at the time was the Governor of Arkansas, Mr. Clinton, arrived relatively unknown to many, particularly in the northern part of the country. Upon, researching his background, it was discovered that he was a Rhodes Scholar, grew up in a small town, and was a shrewd and personable politician, although he was raised in a household that had its share of domestic challenges. Also, he had a colorful life outside of his marriage, to Hillary Clinton that led to a number of embarrassing moments once Mr. Clinton was a full blown candidate for president, but these distractions did not preclude him from achieving his goal of becoming the 42nd President of the United States. As a young man, Clinton was especially drawn to the gospel music performed at his church. He began playing the jazz saxophone, and by the time he graduated from high school, many considered him the best saxophonist in the city. His love of music, continued into the presidency, President Clinton, made an appearance on the Arsenio Hall Show playing the saxophone with shades on which gave him in my view enhanced credibility with the black community and possibly contributed to him be affectionately being dubbed by Toni Morrison as “the first black President”.

President Clinton took office during some tough economic times and was later credited with implementing policies that led to one of the longest economic recoveries in the history of the United States. Also, during Former President Clinton’s tenure in office, he was impeached by the House of Representatives, for lying under oath, six years into his presidency, but was later acquitted by the Senate in 1999.