US Presidential Elections

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?



2012 Libertarian Presidential Nominee
Former Governor of New Mexico

Gary Johnson

Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson

Johnson Career

In the summer of 1974, while still studying at the University of New Mexico, Johnson decided to work part-time as a handyman, doing various types of work which included simple plumbing, remodeling and even construction jobs. His early success prompted him to start Big J Enterprises in 1976, soon after he graduated. It began as a small one-man operation which suddenly grew to multi-million dollar firm after he secured a contract from Intel for an expansion of their manufacturing facility in Rio Rancho, Sandoval County.

The company, built on a solid platform of worker's welfare and good business ethics, continued to grow in strength. By the time Johnson decided to sell the firm in 1994, following his victory in the gubernatorial election of New Mexico, Big J Enterprises employed over a 1,000 workers. The $38 million deal had a clause in it that prevents the retrenchment of existing workers by the new owners.

After finishing his two terms as Governor in 2002, Johnson rejoined the business sector and currently has interests in three firms in the state – Alpha Security Group Corp (a defense-related investment firm), High Beta (a venture capital firm) and GEJ Enterprises (a consulting firm). Johnson is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce.
Johnson's profile, official website and positions on the issues

2012 Democratic Presidential Nominee
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.
Obama's profile, official website and positions on the issues

2012 Republican Presidential Nominee
Former Governor of Massachusetts

Mitt Romney

Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney

Romney Career

• Governor of Massachusetts, 2003-2007;

• Chairman, Republican Governors Association;

• Bain Capital, founded by Romney in 1984;

• Salt Lake Organizing Committee (2002 winter Olympics);

• Bain & Co. vice president, 1978-1984;
Romney's profile, official website and positions on the issues

2012 Republican Vice-Presidential Nominee
U.S. Representative from Wisconsin

Paul Ryan

Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan

Ryan Career

Ryan’s first foray into the working world was at a McDonalds while in high school. The death of his father in 1986, when he was only 16, compelled him to seek additional income for the family. A year later, he worked as a camp counselor at Camp Manito-wish YMCA in Boulder Junction, Wisconsin, during the summer break.

While studying at Miami University, Ohio, Ryan worked as a processed meat salesman in an Oscar Mayer supermarket. In his third year at Miami University, his economics professor, Dr. Rich Hart, arranged a summer internship in the office of Wisconsin Senator Bob Kasten.

It proved to be the catalyst for Ryan’s entry into the world of politics, and more importantly, it was here that he met the former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Jack Kemp. Despite their age difference, the two men hit it off and developed an instant connection. Kemp became his mentor; Ryan, his protégé.

After graduating in 1992, Ryan accepted an offer to join Senator Kasten’s office as a staff economist. However, Kasten’s defeat in his 1992 reelection ended his tenure there. Ryan, at the urging of Kemp, joined the Koch-brothers funded Empower America (now FreedomWorks), a non-profit conservative group based in Washington D.C., as a speechwriter.

It was a demanding position for the young graduate, and as a non-profit organization, the compensation was rather low – more so in D.C. To supplement his income, Ryan first moonlighted as a waiter at the Tortilla Coast restaurant in First Street before becoming a fitness instructor at the Washington Sport and Health Club.

He returned home in 1994 to work in his family’s construction business, Ryan Inc. Central, as a marketing consultant. However, the lure of politics proved to be too strong.

He returned to Washington in 1996 to work for his old mentor, Jack Kemp, who at the time was the running mate for the GOP presidential nominee, Senator Bob Dole. Despite being officially employed as a speechwriter, Ryan became the de facto economic advisor to Kemp. Although Dole was defeated in the hands of former president Bill Clinton, Kemp retained the services of Ryan.

Kemp, who was one of the strongest advocates of supply-side economics in Washington and the GOP, shared the same fundamental ideological belief in fiscal conservatism with Ryan, and their relationship flourished. Professor Hart, in an interview with the New York Times, believed that Ryan “sort of viewed Jack Kemp as something of a second father.

Kemp’s daughter, Judith, concurred with the opinion. “He (Kemp) definitely treated him like a son and would put his arm around him and introduce him and say, ‘Here’s the future of our party.

However, as Kemp’s political career winded down, Ryan returned once again to Janesville, Wisconsin, to work in the family business. But Ryan was a man with a plan, and his return to Wisconsin signaled his final step before making an official entry into politics.

In 1998, as a 28-year old, Ryan shocked the district and state by not only running for the Wisconsin 1st District House seat vacated by two-term incumbent Mark Neumann, but by actually winning the election. In fact, he thrashed his Democratic opponent Lydia Spottswood by 14 points (57% - 43%) to secure his seat in Congress – the second youngest member of the House. Ryan has won six consecutive reelections since then, but his victory in 1998 turned out to be the least decisive.

In an interview with Time Magazine last year, Ryan revealed an advice he received from Democratic Representative from Massachusetts, Barney Frank, during his early days in Congress: “the way to have an impact in Congress is to "be a specialist, not a generalist."

And thus, Ryan zoomed in on his passion - economics. Fourteen years on, Ryan now sits firmly in the upper echelons of the Republican Party leadership. As the current chair of the House Budget Committee, he is also the leader of the party’s fiscal policy. Some even argue that Ryan is the de facto Congressional leader of the party. A recent New York Times report appears to corroborate this. The report suggests that during last year’s debt ceiling discussion between President Barack Obama and the Republican Congressional leadership (House Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor and Speaker of House rep. John Boehner) fell through after Rep. Cantor disclosed that Mr. Ryan disliked the bipartisan policy co-authored by the two parties.
Ryan's profile, official website and positions on the issues




Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate

Kathyern Lane

Presidential Candidate Kathyern Lane

Lane Career

•Security Guard
•Truck Driver
•Warehouse Worker
•Dental Assistant
•Medical Assistant
•Real Estate Agent
•Restaurant Manager
•Avionic Installer
•Avionic Lead

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Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
U.S. Representative from the State of Texas

Ron Paul

Presidential Candidate Ron Paul

Paul Career

• Ron Paul has had two main careers, his medical practice and his political career.

• Ron Paul did his internship and residency at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, MI.

• He became an obstetrician and gynecologist, delivering over 4,000 babies to date. He opened his own practice in Texas.

• He decided to enter politics in 1971 when President Nixon closed the “gold window” and Paul realized that all money would be political rather than having real value.

• He became a delegate to the Texas Republican Convention and the Republican candidate for US congress but was defeated in 1974.

• He won a special election to fill that seat in 1976 when Congressman Robert Casey was given a presidential appointment but lost it in the general election by less than 0.2%.

• He won the seat again in 1978 and was re-elected in ‘80 and ’82 while continuing to deliver babies. After an unsuccessful 1984 run for the senate he returned to medical practice full time.

• Ron Paul ran for president in 1988 as a Libertarian, more to spread the libertarian ideas than to actually win the office, then returned to his medical practice and co-owned a coin dealership.

• He won a congressional seat in 1996, his third win as a non-incumbent. He was re-elected in 1998 and 2000.

• Paul ran for president again in 2008 and lost out early in the process. He won his 12th term in Congress in 2010 with 80% of the vote.

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Declared 2012 Independent Presidential Candidate

Stephen Rollins

Presidential Candidate Stephen Rollins

Rollins Career

Magic Motions Ent.
Lightning Pictures LLC

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Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate

Matt Snyder

Presidential Candidate Matt Snyder

Snyder Career

• Construction worker
• Teacher
• Waiter
• Picture framer
• Salesman
• Coach
• Truck driver
• Tutor
• Landscaper
• Business owner

More on Snyder  

Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate

Vern Wuensche

Presidential Candidate Vern Wuensche

Wuensche Career

• He began working on farms picking cotton at age eight and later chopping peanuts, hauling hay and such.

• He worked his way through college working for Kash Karry Grocery, the U. S. Post Office and the Texas Highway Department.

• Upon graduation from the University of Texas he went to work for Arthur Andersen & Co. as and auditor and then later Peat, Marwick Mitchell & Co. as a tax consultant (now KPMG).

• He later worked for a series of companies including several large homebuilders.

• He started his own company Woodmark Homes, Inc. in Houston in 1975, and over the next 35 years built volume homes, luxury and medium priced custom homes, remodeling of all kinds and kitchen and bath design and construction. He built in Houston, Austin and Dallas. His projects were all high quality. No lawsuit was ever filed over product quality in 35 years. Yet throughout the years there were difficulties. In 1986 when the price of oil dropped to $10 per barrel and Houston fell into a depression, he was advised daily by his lawyer and friend to file bankruptcy. Wuensche refused and obtained one remodeling job in Houston, one in Dallas, and one in Austin, and managed the three jobs by driving the 1000 miles per week of this Texas triangle for a year to survive his business. But to mention one success, Wuensche’s company built a large luxury home in Houston for a nationally prominent lawyer which was one of seven projects in Texas to receive a design award from the Texas Society of Architects. An unsuccessful competitor on this project later built the home of President George H. W. Bush.

• While running his business he was involved continually in politics and campaigns at all levels.

• He participated in local party politics, having served as a precinct chairman and election judge and attending all state conventions for 38 years, usually as a state delegate.

• In 2008 he ran for President, campaigning in Iowa and New Hampshire visiting 6,000 business in 242 towns over 100 days, placing tenth in both states.

More on Wuensche  

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