Naked Politics Blogger
Hillary Clinton secured the Democratic Party’s nomination for the presidency on Tuesday after primary victories in California and New Jersey, taking her pledged delegate count to 2,184 and all but eliminating fellow Democrat Bernie Sanders from the race. This result means we can now turn away from the party primaries and towards the official presidential election in November. The 2016 election will see Hillary Clinton face off against Donald Trump, a ballot no one could have predicted when the race began last year. It appears though that this election is already won and Hillary Clinton will be the next President, she faces an election that is impossible to lose. It seems appropriate then to address Clinton’s major policy platforms and look ahead to what a Hillary Clinton presidency will actually look like.
First of all, let’s address the impossibility of a Trump victory in November. The presumptive Republican nominee has a favourability rating of -65 points, and more specifically is considered ‘strongly unfavourable’ by 53% of Americans, a higher percentage than the last three losing presidential candidates combined. Trump is so unpopular amongst specific voter bases, that he would have to win almost every swing state in the election in order to reach the required number of votes in the Electoral College, a feat that hasn’t been achieved since Ronald Reagan in 1984. It is quite clear that statistically speaking Trump has very little chance of victory; when asked whom voters would support if Trump and Clinton were the nominees Clinton won by 11%, a strikingly impressive margin.
So on the basis that Clinton will win the election what exactly would she do as President? Her policy platform is extremely broad, unlike Trump’s, but it does however lack detail in places and as such drawing conclusions as to what Clinton’s presidential agenda will actually consist of is difficult. We can focus on three major initiatives; the economy, health care, and climate change.
To begin with, her economic policy would be rather dull from an on-lookers’ perspective, it will consist largely of a continuation of the policies implemented by President Obama. The economic recovery has been strong and Hillary will no doubt aim to stay the course. Her one major proposal is the creation of a ‘National Infrastructure Bank’ which would combine public and private sector spending on infrastructure projects with the aim of making this investment more efficient. It’s a similar story with health care, as she has promised to uphold and defend Obamacare and has pledged $500million per year to promote further enrolment. Health care is likely to take a major role in the Clinton administration as she has been such a prominent advocate of reforming the US health system and led the way alongside Obama on passing the Affordable Care Act. On climate change Clinton is establishing a commitment to making America the world leader in renewable energy. She has pledged that by the end of her first term 500 million solar panels would have been fitted and every home in America would be powered by renewable sources.
Many have argued that Hillary Clinton as President will simply be a third term of the Obama administration because the policies are so alike, there is certainly a case to be made with her domestic policies but the same can’t be said for her foreign policy. Clinton served as Obama’s Secretary of State for four years and publicly declared their opposing views on many major issues like Israel, US troops in Afghanistan and Russian President Putin. Whether it will indeed be a third term of Obama is unclear but with her victory inevitable we will find out soon enough.
Hillary Clinton is on a path straight to the White House and between now and the election in November she must simply avoid catastrophe in order to win. Clinton is considered “qualified” for the job of President by more than two thirds of Americans and although unpopular among many she goes into the race as a clear favourite. The media portrayal of the 2016 contest has been of one that is too close to call, but the reality is far from this. No media-driven scaremongering is needed to sway voters from Trump to Clinton as the multi-billionaire businessman’s incoherent and racially abhorrent campaign is enough on its own to encourage Americans to choose Clinton. This election will not be a close one by any stretch of the imagination and we should all start familiarising ourselves with the fact that Hillary Clinton will be the next President of the United States.