Who will succeed incumbent US President Barack Obama? The race is on for the 2016 presidential election as Obama’s second term ends on 20th January 2017. Compiled by KIKELOMO IWAJOMO, DAWN-TO-DUSK NEWS profiles 10 women to watch out in the political battle that will produce the 45th president of the United States of America.
Former U.S. Secretary of State, U.S. Senator and First Lady
Born: October 26th, 1947 (age 67)
Declared 2016 Democratic Presidential Candidate
Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton is a woman who needs no lengthy introduction. Originally from Chicago, Illinois, she attended Wellesley College for a degree in Political Science, then went on to Yale Law School. It was during her schooling at Yale that she met her now-current husband and then-future President of the US, Bill Clinton. Although she was raised Republican and held to a right-wing political ideology for most of her academic career, she would ultimately change her views, and today has amassed an impressive resume of political accomplishments as a decidedly leftist liberal Democrat.
This history – which includes her passive roles as First Lady of Arkansas and then of the United States, as well as active positions such as her two terms as a Senator for the state of New York and four years as US Secretary of State under President Obama – has led her to the present when, now a declared candidate for the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2016, she is easily the favorite in her party.
Clinton is well-known and generally liked amongst a large percentage of the American citizenry. With a serious chance at becoming the first female President in the nation’s history, she has carefully nurtured her image for decades, with some believing she began planning an eventual White House run during her days as her husband’s First Lady – if not earlier. Her intense preoccupation with always presenting herself favorably to the public (and, perhaps more cynically, her skill at playing the game of politics) has sometimes led her to bouts of questionable sincerity.
For instance, she is known to have claimed that her parents named her in honor of Sir Edmund Hillary, an intrepid mountaineer famous for leading the first expedition to successfully climb Mount Everest. In reality, Edmund’s life-defining accomplishment took place in 1953; while alive, he was unknown in 1947, when Hillary Clinton was born and presumably named.
In what had come to be regarded by many as a mere – but important – formality, Clinton officially announced her candidacy for President on April 12th, 2015. Now that she has declared, barring some major upset in American politics, she will almost certainly receive the Democratic presidential nomination. With her vast popularity across many sectors of the American electorate, especially among female voters, Clinton promises to be a formidable opponent for any prospective Republican challenger. Though she once enjoyed double-digit leads over some of the GOP’s biggest names (numbers which have since ebbed), she still wields even standing to slight advantages over the best the Republican party has to offer. Of course, with a Democratic President on his way out in the 2016 elections and tides favoring Republicans, there are no sure bets, but any serious GOP contender would do well to train for battle against Hillary Clinton.
2. CARLY FIORINA
Businesswoman and Former CEO of Hewlett-Packard
Born: September 6th, 1954 (age 61)
Declared 2016 Republican Presidential Candidate
Born Cara Carleton Sneed, Carly Fiorina (who changed her name in 1985 when she married her current husband, Frank Fiorina) stands poised to bring the rare blend of feminine gender and high-level business credentials to the race for the Republican presidential nomination. Thoroughly educated in Business Administration and Marketing, she has served in executive positions for AT&T and that company’s spinoff, Lucent, and most prominently held the role of Chief Executive Officer of Hewlett-Packard from 1999 to 2005.
One of Fiorina’s major liabilities is a complete lack of a political resume, as she has never held any public office. Following her advocacy and work for John McCain’s presidential campaign, she did try for the California Senate seat then held by Democrat Barbara Boxer, but was soundly defeated. As such, she lacks a history of policy implementation and a voting record to define her political leanings, but her stated positions are solidly conservative. She opposes abortion, is critical of fears over climate change, and worries that proposed efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions – particularly the controversial “cap and trade” system – would be prohibitively costly in the amount of jobs that stand to be lost. She has stated that she herself voted for a measure in California to legally define marriage as a heterosexual union between one man and one woman, a measure which passed at the ballot box but was subsequently ruled unconstitutional by a federal court.
While appealing to conservatives for these positions, Fiorina may have cause to fear the emergence of various skeletons in her closet should she choose to run. Following her unsuccessful bid for the California Senate seat, she was criticized for a campaign that finished some $500,000 in debt, which it still has not repaid. There are also questions to be asked regarding her performance as Hewlet-Packard’s CEO, a post from which she was forced to resign by that company’s board of directors over strong disagreement regarding the direction of the business. Conspicuously, HP’s stock was seen to rise following Fiorina’s dismissal.
Nevertheless, Fiorina’s decidedly conservative inclinations strengthen her chances for winning the Republican nod, while her gender would almost certainly work to her favor in the general election against a likely Democratic bid by Hillary Clinton. Clinton’s popularity among undecided female voters who appreciate her in no small part because of the fact that she is a woman is a known quantity in American politics, and Fiorina stands to potentially dampen that advantage by bringing the same appeal, a fact impossible for Republicans to ignore. She is no minor contender for the GOP nomination, and stands a real chance of winning the fight.
3. ELIZABETH WARREN
U.S. Senator from Massachusetts
Born: June 22nd, 1949 (age 66)
Potential 2016 Democratic Presidential Candidate
Having been born into a working class family in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Elizabeth Ann Warren has written her own personal success story. She married her husband, Jim, when she was 18, and moved with him to Houston, Texas to attend college at the University of Houston. Earning her degree in speech pathology and audiology, she moved on a year later to Rutgers School of Law – Newark, where she completed her law degree, in a departure from her original plans to pursue a career in teaching.
Warren admits to a long stint of Republican voting affiliation, due to her one-time belief that the GOP best supported markets. As her political views changed, she abandoned this conviction and switched sides and allegiance to the Democrat party, but says she still votes for candidates from both entities in order to avoid allowing either to dominate. She was elected United States Senator for Massachusetts in 2012, as a Democrat.
Warren is solidly liberal on a majority of issues. She is pro-choice on abortion, and has been known to oppose the confirmation of any potential Supreme Court justices who disagree with her on this subject. She is a proponent of gun control, supporting the reinstatement of an extended magazine long rifle weapons ban and stronger background checks on gun purchases made at shops and gun shows, and opposes limits on firearms trace information sharing. She supports the Obamacare health law and has fought efforts to repeal it, and has even stated that single-payer health care is “the most obvious solution” to the problem of families facing financial ruin in the wake of illness or injury. She also supports gay marriage and the legalization of marijuana – though she does not believe recreational use of the drug should be allowed.
With a solid political career and a charismatic, likable personality, there are those on the left who would loudly cheer at the news that Elizabeth Warren were seeking the Democratic nomination. On several occasions, however, she has reiterated that she is not interested in running, putting a severe damper on those hopes. Should she change her mind, however, she would find unwavering support from a great many voters situated left of center – and equally vociferous opposition from traditional, conservative elements within the American electorate.
4. SAMM TITTLE
Citizen, entrepreneur, advocate for equal treatment for all
Declared 2016 Independent Presidential Candidate
Samm Tittle’s political philosophy can be summed up in one short phrase: “Equal Treatment For All, Because No One Is Above The Law.” This uniquely American notion is the common thread in all of Tittle’s policy positions. For this daughter of immigrants who grew up in a working class family in El Paso, Texas and who worked extremely hard to achieve the American Dream, making sure that everyone has a fair shot to succeed is very important.
Dividing her time between El Paso and Albuquerque, where she worked for her grandparents, brought Tittle into contact with people of many cultures, many of whom were immigrants trying to make their way in the United States and become loyal and productive American citizens. Tittle gained a great appreciation for these hard working immigrants and came to understand that most immigrants come to America not to take from it, but to give back to it.
Through hard work, Tittle became a successful entrepreneur and came to understand that if government was run like a well-oiled business the country and the economy would be in a much better place. For Tittle, jobs are the most important thing because with no job there is no freedom. When an individual has a job they are contributing members of society and many of the problems the country faces are solved.
Tittle is a strong advocate for fairness, equality, transparency and the rule of law. These are thing things she is passionate about. She is a firm believer that no one is above the law, and that we are all in the same boat. Her campaign will be centered on the promise to hold the government accountable for its actions and restore the trust between the American people and their government.
5. JOY WAYMIRE
Veteran and Spiritual Visionary
Born: June 11th, 1952 (age 63)
Declared 2016 Libertarian Presidential Candidate
Joy Waymire resides in California, where she graduated from high school and attended college without completing a degree. She holds a certificate as a Paralegal, however, and has served in the Army.
Waymire is a deeply spiritual person, saying that she learned her faith as a child from a friend only she could see, called Becky. Her mother dismissed this phenomenon as a typical imaginary playmate, but today, as an adult, Waymire still believes Becky was real. She also believes that God has supernaturally intervened in her life on numerous occasions, including by manifesting several graphic and painful stigmata on her head, hands, feet, and side. Having once suffered from Hepatitis C, astigmatism, diabetes, thyroid disease, and rheumatoid arthritis, among a host of other tragic conditions that had her confined to a wheelchair, she says that she has been miraculously healed of all, with doctors unable to offer any rational medical explanation.
Running as a Libertarian, however, Waymire does not support the legislation of morality. She believes in an extremely limited federal government whose purpose is solely to provide for the defense of the nation and its citizens, while adequately funding only very few agencies necessary to accomplish this task. She believes that the government currently draws sufficient revenue to complete this job, and that it is entirely feasible to run it without deficit.
In fact, Waymire opposes virtually all government action in the private sector and private life. She believes it is no place of government to involve itself in the institution of marriage, even to issue marriage licenses (though she personally states that marriage is between the Lord and “a male and female soul”). She believes government interference in health care, and even the advent of insurance companies, have caused health costs to skyrocket. She also speaks against government grants, government management of education, and drug laws. On the issue of illegal immigration, she advocates for a path to citizenship for those currently present in the US illegally while deporting those choosing not to become citizens, and an end to assumed citizenship for children born within the nation’s borders. She does not support increased border patrols or the construction of border fences.
Waymire’s politics are pleasing to just about any Libertarian ear, making her a good fit not only for adherents of that party but also for many fiscal and social conservatives among Republicans. However, her profoundly supernatural mindset could easily be viewed as irrational by many, raising questions about her clarity of thought and vision.
6. JILL STEIN
Physician, Reformer, Environmental Activist
Born: May 14th, 1950 (age 65)
Declared 2016 Green Party Presidential Candidate
Jill Stein felt compelled to put aside her career as a doctor of internal medicine and run for President in 2012 because she felt neither of the major party candidates was speaking to the issues she feels are most important, specifically global warming and issues surrounding the environment.
Stein first entered the political arena when she ran for Governor of Massachusetts in 2002. She was also a candidate for that office in 2010 before accepting the Green Party’s nomination for President in 2012.
Stein built her 2012 campaign on two main issues. The first was her advocacy for the environment. Taking a page from the Franklin Roosevelt playbook, Stein called for a “Green New Deal” that would see investments in green energy and green jobs to not only address global climate change but to put Americans to work as well. Stein rejects the arguments that environmental regulations and conversions to green energy somehow destroy jobs and harm the economy. For Stein, focusing on the environment and building a sustainable infrastructure is the best was to jump start the economy going forward.
Stein is also an activist for a strong middle class. Throughout the 2012 campaign, she spoke out against the bailout of Fannie Mae, arguing that the entity continued to go after average people and make them pay for the mistakes for which the firm was being bailed out for. Stein is not afraid to risk jail time for what she believes in, as evidenced by her twin arrests in 2012. The first arrest came while protesting against Fannie Mae in Philadelphia and the second came as she attempted to take part in a Presidential debate in October 2012.
Stein’s tenacity is much needed in the American system that rewards the two major parties and penalizes candidates from independent parties. Stein was on the ballot in 85% of the country in 2012, yet received just 7% of the vote against President Obama, Mitt Romney and Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson.
Undeterred by history, Stein looks set to enter the political arena once again and make another run for the nation’s highest office in 2016.
7. SHAWNA STERLING
Woman of Faith
Declared 2016 Independent Presidential Candidate
Shawna Sterling lives in the state of Kentucky. Other than that fact, she offers little personal information about herself, such as her city and state of birth, employment background, or education credentials. She has an unshakeable religious faith and speaks often and at length of God and His plans and intentions for humanity. She credits God with the creation of life (and much else), and charges that the “enemy of God” wishes to destroy that life.
Sterling is a strong opponent of the use of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in food. She blames GMOs for the childhood obesity epidemic, and in fact was greatly disturbed by a conversation she had with a young boy and girl, in which she learned that cake and ice cream were no longer being served to school children (as she home schools her own daughter, she says, she did not know this), and that they were among the foods implicated in causing obesity among kids. She accuses the Obama administration of knowing full well that GMOs are at fault for this problem, even as it works to “indoctrinate” children into blaming sweets. She has specifically promised that if elected (she uses the term “when”), she will ensure that cake and ice cream are again available in schools, and that they will be produced organically, without the use of GMOs.
Sterling is strictly pro-life on abortion, arguing that even human zygotes born on US soil are citizens of the United States and therefore cannot constitutionally be deprived of life without due process of law. She specifically objects to the use of taxpayer money to fund abortions, and promises that she will work to end this practice as President.
Economically, Sterling supports balancing the budget. She believes that this can be accomplished by defunding “nonproductive programs”, without going into detail. However, she specifically rules out the reduction of defense spending and the increase of any and all taxes in service of the goal.
Sterling is a likeable, conservative woman of faith who is likely to appeal to voters right of center. Even left-wing Americans may find some appeal in her rigid stance against GMOs, though they are not likely to approve of her views on abortion.
Note: Shawna Sterling amended her statement of candidacy with the FEC on July 14, 2015. She was originally running as a Republican Party candidate and is now running as an independent candidate.
8. TAMI STAINFIELD
Computer Science and Political Studies expert
Born: July 20th, 1962 (age 53)
Declared 2016 Independent Presidential Candidate
Independent candidate Tami Stainfield was born and raised in New Hampshire. After high school, she left New Hampshire to enroll at Indiana State University, where she received an athletic scholarship in field hockey and was eventually awarded a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science. After graduation, Stainfield spent eighteen years working and living in nine different states, with careers in banking, education, healthcare, IT, building automation and energy conservation. Today, she is living in Charleston, West Virginia.
Stainfield also traveled the world, visiting no less than 29 countries, including South Africa, where she received a Masters in Development from the Political Studies, Department of The University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. She states that visits to so many different countries gave her a perfect opportunity to study “people’s” opinion on culture, business and politics, as well as their perception of correlation between these factors.
Cornerstone of Stainfield’s political program is Supreme Court definition of liberty, which defines liberty as “… not merely freedom from bodily restraint, but also the right of the individual to contract, to engage in any of the common occupations of life … and generally to enjoy those privileges long recognized at common law as essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men … “ She presents herself as Anti-Globalist, and also criticizes party-based politics of United States, which is in her opinion, leading the country to “oligarchy and authoritarian principles”. One of the videos on Tami Stainfield’s YouTube channel shows one monologue of hers, featuring subject of mind control, which according to her, is an instrument widely used for forcing individuals to reason and behave in a certain way.
9. LYNN KAHN
Declared 2016 Independent Presidential Candidate
Dr Sandra Lynn Kahn, PhD, has built a successful career as an executive consultant. In her work, she has been responsible for strategic planning in a number of diverse issues, including workforce development, aviation, and justice reform. Now running as an Independent candidate for President, she runs her campaign around the slogan “Fix government, build peace”, and proposes seven key points necessary for achieving these goals. Proposing that people innately desire a world free from war for themselves and their families, she argues that the more challenging of her tasks by far is to fix government, and devotes six entrants of her seven-track strategy to that pursuit. The remaining point concerns itself with building peace, the “easier” of her ambitions.
Dr Kahn borrows from both sides of the political fence in the content of her proposals. Sounding positively conservative, she advocates the need to reduce the cost of government by 30% via the elimination of bureaucratic waste, and to return the money saved directly to the people and their communities. She speaks of a responsible government built on lean inter-agency communications and citizen input. On the other hand, while acknowledging the importance of promoting business growth, she moves to the left in calling for a closer eye on workers’ safety and environmental protection. Additionally, she seeks to accomplish her overall goal – building peace – by streamlining government to that purpose, but hers is a decidedly diplomacy-oriented pursuit of peace. She calls for disarmament talks and ceasefires, citizen summits and community dialogues, with less emphasis on military strength and projection than might please a conservative ear.
In the end, with input from all sides and ideas that never stray far into extreme territory, Dr Kahn’s policies are comfortably centrist and unlikely to offend any side to a vast degree. Conservatives might object to her environmental concerns and idealistic notions of only modestly armed peace, while liberals would be more likely to arch an eyebrow at her calls for streamlining government – something often taken as code for reducing its size. But there is nothing in her platform to drive voters away in droves, and ultimately, her biggest problem may be the one she shares with all third-party and unaffiliated candidates: Extremely limited name recognition.
10. CYNTHIA MCKINNEY
Former U.S. Representative from Georgia
Born: March 17th, 1955 (age 60)
Potential 2016 Green Party Presidential Candidate
Rep. McKinney lost her bid to contest for a seventh term in Congress in 2006 after she was surprisingly defeated in the Democratic primary by attorney Hank Johnson. She attributed her defeat to the Republican protest votes in the state’s open primary, a direct result of her often controversial criticisms against the administration of former president George W. Bush.
She joined the Green Party in 2007 after expressing her disillusionment with the Democratic Party leadership. The following year, Rep. McKinney won the Green Party’s nomination for president and subsequently obtained ballot access in 32 states for the presidential election. In the election proper, Rep. McKinney finished sixth, with a 0.12% share of the votes.