Current Democratic Presidential Race

In this photo taken May 20, 2015, Democratic Presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., poses for a portrait before an interview with The Associated Press in Washington. For Democrats who had hoped to lure Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren into a presidential campaign, independent Sen. Bernie Sanders might be the next best thing. Sanders, who is opening his official presidential campaign Tuesday in Burlington, Vermont, aims to ignite a grassroots fire among left-leaning Democrats wary of Hillary Rodham Clinton. He is laying out an agenda in step with the party's progressive wing and compatible with Warren's platform _ reining in Wall Street banks, tackling college debt and creating a government-financed infrastructure jobs program. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

AP

In this photo taken May 20, 2015, Democratic Presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., poses for a portrait before an interview with The Associated Press in Washington. For Democrats who had hoped to lure Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren into a presidential campaign, independent Sen. Bernie Sanders might be the next best thing. Sanders, who is opening his official presidential campaign Tuesday in Burlington, Vermont, aims to ignite a grassroots fire among left-leaning Democrats wary of Hillary Rodham Clinton. He is laying out an agenda in step with the party’s progressive wing and compatible with Warren’s platform _ reining in Wall Street banks, tackling college debt and creating a government-financed infrastructure jobs program. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

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As the 2016 Presidential elections near, there is a lot of political activity going on. Let’s take a look at the Democratic side of events.

Though several candidates are running as Democratic in the current race, only two candidates are high in the polls. Hillary Clinton is currently the most favored at 43.3%, with Bernie Sanders coming in second at 23.8%  (http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2016/president/us/2016_democratic_presidential_nomination-3824.html). Third is Joe Biden at 20%, however he is not currently running. Less notably are O’Malley, Webb, and Chafee, all at under 1% in the polls.

Biden has not announced that he is running for president. He feels that despite support, running would most likely not be good for his family right now. His son Beau, who was struggling with brain cancer, passed away at the age of 42 in May. If Biden chooses to not run in the end, it would be to advantage to Clinton. Without Biden Clinton would jump to 57% in the polls, with Sanders only up to 29%.

Despite Clinton and Sanders being at the top of the polls, they both have very different views. When it comes to individual rights, Clinton is more conservative. They both strongly agree with abortion being a woman’s right, same sex marriage, and making voter registration easier. Though Sanders strongly disagrees with keeping God in the public sphere, Clinton only mildly disagrees. On the topic of absolute right to gun ownership, Clinton strongly disagrees, where Sanders has taken no opinion. Both candidates also agree that marijuana is not a gateway drug, so more lenient marijuana laws could be expected if either of them becomes president. Where Sanders and Clinton’s opinions vastly differ is the issue of defense and international issues. Sanders does not support expanding free trade, and does support the U.S. avoiding further entanglements with foreign nations. Clinton’s views however, are flipped.

Although, sharing similar views, that wasn’t the case at the start of their campaigning. Clinton has changed her ideals quite a few times depending on the public’s support, such as her stance on gay marriage. She claims to support it, despite being documented saying that marriage was a sacred bond to be only shared by straight couples. With that in mind, I’d recommend personally watching their debates over time. Sanders may have more extreme views, but he sticks to what he says. Don’t forget to vote when the time comes either. Without your vote, your opinion doesn’t matter.