The 2024 Presidential Election: Where We Stand

Although 2024 feels like a lifetime away, it will be here before we know it, along with the 2024 Presidential Election. In the United States, elections are a time of division. Politicians throw arguments and criticisms between one another while the American people huddle in the middle and look for shelter. While many of us try to make sense of everything, election years end up feeling quite overwhelming. No matter what party you support or where you stand on the political spectrum, knowing the presidential candidates early can help you keep everything and everyone straight. 

Presidential Candidate Lineup

There are currently four people who have officially announced their candidacy for the 2024 Presidential Election. First, is former President Donald Trump, who announced his campaign in November 2022 and is looking to reenter the Oval Office. Competing against Trump for the Republican spot are Nikki Haley and Vivek Ramaswamy. While President Biden has not formally announced a plan to run for reelection, he has stated it is his “intention” to run again. Also vying for the Democratic spot is Marianne Williamson. 

Republican Candidates

45th President and 2024 candidate Donald Trump
Photo Credit: The New York Times

Former President Donald Trump announced his campaign after a reportedly “lackluster” performance by the Trump-backed Republican candidates in the midterm elections. Recently, Trump won 62% of votes in a straw poll for the 2024 GOP nomination at the Conservative Political Action Conference. Even with this support from GOP members, Trump continues to face criticism and controversy surrounding the January 6 US Capitol insurrection in 2021. After the insurrection, Trump was impeached twice–though he was never removed from office–and investigations concerning his involvement in this event have continued.

The first challenger of Trump’s campaign is a former member of his staff –  Nikki Haley. Haley was the former Governor of South Carolina and was the administrative ambassador

2024 Republican Candidate Nikki Haley
Photo Credit: Rolling Stone

of the U.N. under Trump. After originally saying she would not run against Trump, Haley announced her candidacy. Along with her criticisms of Biden’s foreign policy, she has called for the ushering in of a “New Generation” of younger politicians. Topics such as Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare have already secured their place on the chopping block in Haley’s campaign.  

The third Republican candidate to officially announce a run for President is 37- year-old, Vivek Ramaswamy. Ramaswamy was a former tech and finance executive with no previous political experience.

2024 Republican Candidate Vivek Ramaswamy
Photo Credit: The New Yorker

So far, his campaign has categorized itself as “anti-woke” as he argues against the environmental, social and governance (ESG) movement. Ramaswamy also believes our country is too divided and emphasizes national pride and community.  So far, these three candidates are the only Republicans to have formally announced their campaign. 

Democratic Candidates

2024 Democrat Candidate Marianna Williamson
Photo Credit: CNN

On the Democratic side, Marianne Williamson is the only candidate who has officially announced a campaign for the 2024 Presidential election. Williamson ran for the Democratic president nomination in 2020 but gained little traction. Now she has returned and continues to base her campaign on anti-corporate populism. She has decried corporate culture in America and  tweeted that she wanted to bring an end to the era of government “of the corporations, by the corporations, and for the corporations.” She has taken stances on the side of universal healthcare, free childcare, a wealth tax and creating a green economy. Even though Williamson is the only Democratic candidate to formally step forward, she is largely being dismissed by the Democrat Party.

Current President Joe Biden
Photo Credit: NBC

Even so, there is much still in the air concerning whether or not President Biden will run for reelection. At 80 years-old, many question Biden’s ability to withstand another Presidential term. According to a recent poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, only 37% of Democrats nationwide want Biden to pursue a second term. This is a large decrease from the 52% standing prior to the midterm elections. While Biden has seen his fair share of criticism in his term, he has also made landmark decisions such as protecting marriage equality. With so few Democrats stepping forward so far, it is hard to say who Biden would run against if he chooses to run for re-election in 2024. 

The Political Landscape Going Forward

With constant changes in the election field, there may be more candidates announcing their campaigns in the coming weeks and months. For example, Florida governor Ron DeSantis and former Vice President Mike Pence have expressed interest in running for the Republican spot. On the other hand, the Democrats remain largely up in the air as they continue to assess their options. In the end, there is still a fair amount of time for new candidates and campaigns to appear, so voters will have to stay up-to-date as these new developments occur. Politics can be troubling and complicated waters to sail, especially as a college student. Having constructive and safe conversations around this subject and monitoring the consumption of politics will be helpful when navigating this stressful political season. Even so, students await the final line up for the big political race to come. 

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