Election 2016 update

Kylie Cracknell, Staff Writer

This summer was one for the books as far as presidential elections go. As summer comes to a bitter end and fall classes begin, it’s a good time to take a look back and see what made this summer in politics so memorable.

We started the summer with 22 candidates all racing for the White House, but now we have the nominees for both major parties. The Republican National Convention (RNC) awarded Donald Trump the Republican nomination even after Trump faced constant ridicule from the media and defiance from members of his own party.

Before he accepted his nomination, Trump announced his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence. Pence tends to be more conservative than Trump, but members of the Republican Party were impressed with his choice.

In the Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton accepted her nomination as the first female to be nominated by a major party for the presidency. Clinton announced her running mate, Sen. Tim Kaine, from Virginia. Kaine is known for being a moderate but well-seasoned politician. This could attract voters in the swing states.

While the Democrats and Republicans tend to take the majority of news coverage and leverage the most support, it is also important to remind voters of candidates from other parties. Candidate Darrell Castle leads the Constitution party, Dr. Jill Stein leads the Green party and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson leads the Libertarian party. While it is unlikely that these candidates will be able to defeat Trump and Clinton, it’s important for voters to know that they have other options.

The biggest events in politics this summer were the national conventions for both the Democrats and Republicans. Both conventions were also faced with some major problems.

The RNC, which took place in Cleveland, Ohio, this year, had a rocky start as allegations swarmed in the media that Melania Trump’s speech was plagiarized from Michelle Obama’s speech just four years earlier at the Democratic National Convention (DNC). While the speeches have some major similarities, the Trump campaign denied the allegations. Then, former candidate and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz refused to endorse Trump. And to top all of that off, musicians used Twitter to voice how upset they were that the RNC used some of their popular tunes. However, with all the problems the RNC faced, Trump’s poll numbers still rose slightly after the closing of the convention.

The DNC took place a week after the RNC, and Debbie Schultz, chair of the DNC, stepped down after an email scandal just days before the convention commenced in Philadelphia, Pa. The event also had to deal with hundreds of angry Bernie Sanders’ supporters protesting the event, even though Sanders appeared at the convention to endorse Clinton.

One of the biggest moments of the DNC was when a Muslim-American family took to the stage to discuss how Clinton supported them after their son lost his life serving in Iraq. Controversy ensued after Trump began a feud with the family over social media.

With all the drama that took place this summer in politics, major news networks felt more like soap operas. As September approaches, the days of campaigning for all candidates are narrowing down. Trump is slowly improving his un-presidential nature and Clinton is working to prove to the American people she can be trusted. As Clinton leads in the major polls by five points and more former “battleground” states are beginning to lean Democrat, it seems Clinton has the election wrapped up, but never underestimate American politics. Anything can happen.