On Sunday, Hillary Rodham Clinton made the announcement everyone has been expecting for months. She’s running for President in 2016, and this time it doesn’t look like there’s going to be much of an adversary within the Democratic Party. The Republican Party is another matter, though. She’ll likely be squaring off against Republican frontrunners Jeb Bush or Scott Walker, and here’s what she’s got to do to get essential votes:
1. Appeal to the Latino Voter
The influence of Hispanic voters in Florida, a key battleground state, cannot be underestimated. Democrats have traditionally held that demographic, and Clinton will need to make sure that holds true if she wants to win Florida – which could help decide the election. This means focusing on immigration policy, and not alienating Hispanic voters like the Arizona Immigration Law did back in 2012 for Republicans. Since Democrats typically get the Hispanic vote, Clinton’s strategy should simply be focused keeping Hispanic votes from shifting to the Republican Party.
2. Prove her Foreign Policy Prowess
Despite Republican attempts to turn Benghazi into Clinton’s Watergate scandal, a Gallup poll indicated in June 2014 that most Americans were paying “little to no attention” to information about the news about the (then upcoming) Benghazi hearings. This is good news for Clinton, because it means that a scandal hasn’t materialized like Republican pundits promised it would. But that doesn’t mean that Clinton has foreign policy locked in 2016. Specifically, although she’s proposed a two-state solution for Israel, she hasn’t articulated what that would look like yet. This is likely because she must strike a tricky balance – appearing open enough to mediation that she
doesn’t strike Democrats as a hardliner, and appearing kind enough to Israel to appease key Jewish populations in Florida as well as right-leaning whites.
3. Look to the Sea
Clinton’s stance on climate change is going to have to be strong as the US begins adapting to some of Obama’s green initiatives. Additionally, most Republicans are still climate skeptics, and this poll shows that a majority of voters, regardless of party, would vote for a someone who believes that climate change is happening and that humans are causing it over someone who isn’t. Clinton, then, needs to make sure her position is well known so she can get some of those votes.
4. Address Income Inequality
Remember Occupy Wall Street? Even though that movement, in name at least, seems to have come to an end, income inequality is rearing its head as a very important issue in 2016. It only makes sense – politicians need to appeal to their voters, who are increasingly finding themselves on the lower portion of the income gap. But what makes it hard for Hillary is the increasingly midline views of Republican candidates. She can’t stand out by simply acknowledging income inequality to be an issue anymore – now almost everyone agrees with that. Instead, she has to preform the much harder task of convincing voters that her way of solving the issue is the best way.
Wouldn’t it be nice if anyone could run for President (and have a shot at winning) without the benefit of millions of dollars in campaign funds? I think we’d all agree that such a situation would be ideal, but in America, that’s just not the reality. With deep-pocketed donors like the Koch brothers waiting in the wings to help whoever becomes the Republican nominee, Clinton really needs to fundraise – and fast – to stand a fighting chance. Her PAC is apparently having trouble meeting an early goal of $500 million. It’s strange to think that so much money is necessary for a successful bid, and that $500 million is a standard number for Presidential frontrunners, but it is – and this election is going to break spending records.
Even if Clinton does all this, it’s no guarantee that she’ll win in 2016. But taking some of these issues head on could do wonders for her campaign. Who knows? Two years from now, when someone brings up President Clinton, you may have to ask – “Which one?”