The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

Meet the Candidates; Who’s in the Race?; A Presidential Review

A Short, Non-Biased Background of the 2024 US Presidential Candidates
Photo credit: The Parker Weekly

As the next US Presidential election looms, several students at our school will turn 18 and become eligible to vote by November 2024. If you haven’t followed the race yet or don’t know where to begin looking or who to trust, here is a non-biased background on each candidate.  


The Democrats

Joe Biden

Joe Biden is the incumbent and 46th President of the United States. He served as Vice President under President Barack Obama from 2009 to 2017. Prior to his time as Vice President, Biden had a long career in politics, serving as a United States Senator from Delaware for over three decades. As President, Biden has focused on a wide range of issues, including the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, racial justice, and economic recovery. He has also proposed numerous policy initiatives in areas such as healthcare, infrastructure, and education. Controversy surrounding him includes his withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, legal issues involving his son’s drug abuse, and sexual assault allegations from Tara Reade, among many others.


Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is an American environmental lawyer and political activist. He is the son of Robert F. Kennedy, the former Attorney General of the United States, and the nephew of former President John F. Kennedy. Kennedy has been a vocal advocate for environmental issues, including the fight against climate change and the preservation of natural resources. He has also been involved in various political campaigns and has written several books on environmental topics. Controversy surrounding him includes the spreading of conspiracy theories regarding vaccinations and the origins of COVID-19.


Marianne Williamson

Marianne Williamson is an American author, spiritual teacher, and political activist. She gained national attention during the 2020 United States presidential election as a candidate for the Democratic Party nomination. Williamson is known for her self-help books, including “A Return to Love” and “The Law of Divine Compensation.” She has also written about spirituality and personal growth. Apart from her writing career, Williamson has been involved in various humanitarian and peace-building initiatives. She has advocated for issues such as poverty reduction and women’s rights. Controversies surrounding her include allegations of abuse and anger issues from her former staffers, as well as criticism for her general lack of political experience.


The Republicans

Donald Trump

Donald Trump is a well-known businessman and politician who served as the 45th President of the United States from 2017 to 2021. He is known for his outspoken nature and unique leadership style. During his presidency, Trump focused on issues such as immigration, foreign policy with US adversaries, trade, and healthcare. He also implemented significant tax cuts and deregulation measures. Controversy surrounding him includes impeachment during his presidency, current RICO charges from the Georgia district attorney general, and previous sexual assault allegations, among others. 


Doug Burgum

Doug Burgum is the current Governor of North Dakota, serving since 2017. Prior to his governorship, he was a successful entrepreneur and philanthropist. Under his leadership, North Dakota has experienced economic growth and development in the energy and technology sectors. Governor Burgum is also known for his focus on education and workforce development. Controversy surrounding his campaign includes his stance opposing LGBTQ+ rights and his cooperation with oil companies.


Chris Christie

Chris Christie is an American politician and former Governor of New Jersey. He served two terms from 2010 to 2018. Christie is a prominent figure in the Republican Party and has been involved in various political campaigns and initiatives. During his tenure as Governor, he focused on issues such as pension reform, education reform, and economic development. He ran for the Republican nomination for President in 2016 but ultimately withdrew. After leaving office, Christie has worked as a political commentator and consultant. The most controversial issue involving Chris Christie was the famous “Bridgegate” scandal, where he closed lanes and organized traffic jams in retribution against the Democratic mayor of Fort Lee, New Jersey, after the mayor refused to endorse Christie in the 2013 elections.


Ron Desantis

Ron DeSantis is an American politician and lawyer who currently serves  as the 46th Governor of Florida since 2019. He previously served in the United States House of Representatives from 2013 to 2018. DeSantis is a member of the Republican Party and has been known for his conservative policies, particularly on issues such as immigration and taxes. As Governor, he has focused on issues such as education, the economy, and healthcare. DeSantis’s controversies include his recent legal battle with Disney, his relocation of foreign migrants from Florida, and the removal of State Attorney Monique Worrell of the 9th Judicial Circuit, among others.


Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley is an American politician and diplomat. She served as the United States Ambassador to the United Nations from 2017 to 2018. Prior to that, she was the Governor of South Carolina from 2011 to 2017. As Ambassador to the UN, Haley advocated for human rights, economic sanctions on North Korea, and the withdrawal of the United States from the UN Human Rights Council. Some past controversies from Haley involve her stance on the UN’s treatment of Israel and her role in the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on climate change.


Asa Hutchinson

Asa Hutchinson is the current Governor of Arkansas, serving since 2015. Prior to his governorship, he served as the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas and as a member of the Arkansas Legislature. He was also appointed as the Undersecretary for Border and Transportation Security of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security under the Bush Administration and served as the Director of the Drug Enforcement Administration between 2003 and 2005. Hutchinson has been a vocal advocate for education and workforce development and has made efforts to improve the state’s economy and infrastructure during his tenure. His controversies include accusations of using state resources for personal gain, Arkansas’ handling of the opioid crisis under his leadership, and allegations of accepting lavish gifts from lobbyists.


Mike Pence

Michael Pence is an American politician who served as the 48th vice president of the United States from 2017 to 2021 under Donald Trump. Prior to this role, he was the Governor of Indiana from 2013 to 2017. Pence is a member of the Republican Party and has been involved in politics for many years. He chaired the Republican Study Committee for two years and the House Republican Conference for two years. Controversy surrounding him includes his varying relationship with Donald Trump following the end of his presidency, his handling of the Ukrainian war, and his support for legislation such as the Religious Freedom Restoration Act in Indiana.


Vivek Ramaswamy

Vivek Ramaswamy is a successful entrepreneur and author who has made a significant impact in the fields of healthcare and biotechnology. He is the founder and CEO of Roivant Sciences, a biotechnology company that focuses on developing innovative treatments for various diseases. Ramaswamy is also the author of the book “The Patient Will See You Now,” which explores the intersection of technology and healthcare. Controversy involving Ramaswamy includes his fraud allegations involving a faulty Alzheimer’s drug and other methods used by his company, alongside an overall lack of political experience. 


Tim Scott

Tim Scott is an American politician and Senator from South Carolina. He is a member of the Republican Party and has been serving in the Senate since 2013. Prior to his Senate career, Scott served in the House of Representatives from 2011 to 2013. He is known for his advocacy on issues related to criminal justice reform, education, and civil rights. Tim Scott lacks serious allegations and controversy in his history, with criticism mainly directed at his views on racial education. 

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