2016 Presidential Candidates

The will be held on Tuesday, November 8th, 2016  ♦  2016 Presidential Candidates

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  Republican Convention
    Chris Christie
    Rick Santorum
    Ann Romney
    Ted Cruz
    Mike Huckabee
    Condoleezza Rice
    Paul Ryan
    Clint Eastwood
    Jeb Bush
    Marco Rubio
    Mitt Romney
  Democratic Convention
    Debbie Wasserman Schultz
    Rahm Emmanuel
    Julian Castro
    Michelle Obama
    Sandra Fluke
    Elizabeth Warren
    Bill Clinton
    Caroline Kennedy
    John Kerry
    Jill Biden
    Joe Biden
    Barack Obama


"Politics, just as economic pursuits, may be a man's avocation or his vocation. One may engage in politics, and hence seek to influence the distribution of power within and between political structures, as an 'occasional' politician… Politics as an avocation is today practiced by all those party agents and heads of voluntary political associations who, as a rule, are politically active only in case of need and for whom politics is, neither materially nor ideally, 'their life' in the first place...

There are two ways of making politics one's vocation: Either one lives 'for' politics or one lives 'off' politics. By no means is this contrast an exclusive one. The rule is, rather, that man does both, at least in thought, and certainly he also does both in practice. He who lives 'for' politics makes politics his life, in an internal sense. Either he enjoys the naked possession of the power he exerts, or he nourishes his inner balance and self-feeling by the consciousness that his life has meaning in the service of a 'cause.'

In this internal sense, every sincere man who lives for a cause also lives off this cause. The distinction hence refers to a much more substantial aspect of the matter, namely, to the economic. He who strives to make politics a permanent source of income lives 'off' politics as a vocation, whereas he who does not do this lives 'for' politics. Under the dominance of the private property order, some--if you wish-- very trivial preconditions must exist in order for a person to be able to live 'for' politics in this economic sense. Under normal conditions, the politician must be economically independent of the income politics can bring him. This means, quite simply, that the politician must be wealthy or must have a personal position in life which yields a sufficient income."
German sociologist Max Weber, in his paper Politik als Beruf (Politics as a Vocation), January 1919

Weber summed up everything almost perfectly, and there's hardly anything more to add, apart from two obvious points:

♦ A politician with an established career prior to entering the realm of politics, potentially possesses an array of unique skill sets, world views and a sectoral network.

♦ A career politician meanwhile, has the advantage of an established legislative, executive and community network, as well as a sharpened political sense and an understanding of how to work the system and the press

So the question is, which of the two would contribute to the making of a better president in real life? Alternatively, should we be looking at a combination of both instead?

Current President of the United States

Barack Obama

Presidential Candidate Barack Obama
Obama Career

Obama’s first official job was as a financial writer for New York-based international consulting
firm, Business International Corporation. He joined the firm soon after graduating from Columbia
University in 1985.

Less than two years later, Obama moved to South Side, Chicago, to take up the position of Director for the Developing Communities Project in Roseland and Altgeld Gardens, a church-based social action group dedicated towards enhancing the living conditions of people in the community. His responsibilities ranged from the mundane, day-to-day support service (utilities, regulatory, legal, employment), to those involving organizing and developing outreach and educational programs for the community. During the period, Obama also volunteered for the Gamaliel Foundation, a congregation-based organization that provides leadership training programs, consultation, research and analysis on social justice issues for community leaders.

He left in 1988 to enroll with Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. While at Harvard, Obama worked as a summer associate in the law firms of Sidley & Austin and Hopkins & Sutter (now known as Foley & Lardner).

After graduation, he returned to Chicago and practiced civil rights law with the law firm of Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland. He was attached to the firm from 1992 until 2004. In the same period, he also taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School, first as a lecturer (1992-1996), and later, as professor (1996-2004).
Obama at the University of Chicago

He took his first step into politics by heading the Illinois Project VOTE, a Clinton-campaign supported voter-registration initiative. Under his leadership, the program managed to successfully register over 150,000 new voters in 1992. His next foray into politics came four years later when he ran for and won the Illinois 13th District State Senate seat. He repeated the feat in 1998 by defeating Republican Yesse Yehudah, securing an incredible 89% of the votes in the process.

In 2000, Obama made a step up and contested the House of Representatives seat of Illinois District 1. He was, however, soundly beaten in the Democratic primary by the incumbent, Bobby Rush, losing by a huge 30.67 points. Rush has the distinction of being the only person to defeat Obama in an election for public office. Obama remains unfazed and regrouped to defend his State Senate seat in 2002, winning unopposed.

In November 2004, Obama, who by then had risen to the chairmanship of the Illinois Senate's Public Health and Welfare Committee, made another attempt for national office. This time, he won the Illinois Senate seat after routing his Republican challenger, Alan Keyes, by winning 70% of the votes. His strong performance is widely credited to his acclaimed keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in Boston that year. He was sworn as US Senator on January 4, 2005.

Amidst a breakneck senatorial career that saw him either sponsoring or co-sponsoring a total of 627 bills, Senator Obama announced that he was running for president of the United States on February 10, 2007, in Springfield, Illinois. Obama was officially unveiled as the Democratic nominee on August 2008 after winning a closely contested primary battle with Hillary Clinton.

In the 2008 presidential election, Obama, with Delaware Senator Joe Biden as his running mate, comprehensively defeated Republican challenger John McCain by winning 365 electoral votes to his opponent’s 173. Obama was inaugurated as the 44th President of the United States of America on January 20, 2009.

More on Barack Obama


Pro-life Activist

Randall Terry

Presidential Candidate Randall Terry
Terry Career

1986-90: Founder and Director of Operation Rescue

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