In a political climate overrun by Donald Trump hysteria, most Americans have not heard of Carly Fiorina. The former Hewlett-Packard CEO is the only woman so far to join the crowded field of Republicans running for president. Who is she? Does she have a chance at winning?
In one sense, Carly is the female version of Trump — or at the very least, she has Trump’s best qualities. She is a businesswoman whose authoritative attitude on camera, on radio and in print has raised eyebrows.
But unlike Trump, she has distinguished herself as one of the most articulate candidates in the race. She is not afraid of tough questions. And while increasingly complicated situations develop daily both on the world stage and at home, Carly has showcased her impressive knowledge of issues, ranging from the Iran deal, to our relationship with China to the turmoil in the stock markets. And unlike Trump, she is running a campaign based on issues, not ad hominem attacks.
Carly first caught the eye of the national media when she outshone her fellow candidates in an August debate. Fox News hosted two debates, one for candidates performing well in the polls (including Trump, Wis. Gov. Scott Walker and former Fl. Gov. Jeb Bush) and an earlier one for those lagging behind (including former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former Va. Sen. Rick Santorum and La. Gov. Bobby Jindal). Carly was among the latter, and the consensus in the following days was that her performance was the best out of both debates. You can find clips or the whole debate on YouTube.
Following a very public crusade against CNN, she has since won a spot on the stage for their debate on Sept. 16th. (Be sure to tune in at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. EST.) CNN initially said it would choose candidates based on poll numbers that would include those before the Fox debate, effectively eliminating Fiorina. Why? Because her abysmal poll numbers before the Fox debate would cancel out her more recent success in the polls. But after asking her supporters to lobby CNN on her behalf, the network succumbed to the pressure and changed its rules. Now, Carly will have the chance to deliver her message to a much larger audience. Her easy-to-understand solutions to complex policy questions are one way she will distinguish herself from most candidates.
For the average student interested in learning more about all candidates, politico.com offers excellent, very balanced coverage. Check out their 2016 Election section. YouTube is also a great source. Watch the candidates answer tough questions during interviews. Do they actually have solutions? Are they someone you want representing our country abroad?
Being a busy student is not an excuse for being uninformed. Use 10 minutes of your Facebook/Twitter time to read one article about the upcoming elections. People of all political stripes have a responsibility to know about the men and women who want to be the next leader of our country.