A new year is barely six weeks old, yet the life of a political season won’t conclude for months.

Numerous Republican presidential campaigns were born in 2015, as were a few Democrats.  Some of those fledgling endeavors like that of Rick Perry, Scott Walker and Bobby Jindal didn’t last long – they expired before any votes were even tabulated.

The first state to conduct an election was the caucuses held in Iowa.  New Hampshire followed with their primary election roughly a week later.  The Republican herd began to thin after Iowa when three dropped out of the race because of poor showings in the Hawkeye state.  The herd thinned once more after the Granite State contest when two more withdrew.

For the Democrats, the first contest began with two candidates and it remains that way.

Iowa is an agricultural state, a corn producer that relies heavily on government subsidies for ethanol.  Ted Cruz was the only candidate to say subsidies for ethanol should be reduced or eliminated – the rest of the field wholeheartedly endorsed taxpayer subsidies for the ethanol industry.  Strikingly though, Cruz won the contest.

If electric cars, solar panels and wind turbines, as well as ethanol, are in high demand then let capitalism prevail and consumers will drive the market in purchasing such items. The unfortunate part of that is crony capitalism comes into play and the government becomes the consumer of such commodities that the public isn’t really interested in, and the taxpayer suffers.

Hillary Clinton won the Iowa contest, quite literally, by a coin toss.  In New Hampshire, Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders won that state’s primary for their prospective parties.

It would appear the “Establishment” candidates on the Republican side aren’t getting much traction this year.  Although with two states down, and less than 2% of the delegates committed to win the party’s nomination, it would appear there’s a political tidal wave coming and outsiders like Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, and Bernie Sanders are appealing to the electorate this time around.  Quite frankly, the citizens of America are fed up with politicians and business as usual.

Both parties could learn a thing or two from this political earthquake that’s beginning to shake the country.  The Republican Party thought it was best to nominate a moderate candidate, instead of a conservative one, in 2008 and 2012.  Barack Obama won both contests, but in doing so the Democrats have unleashed a progressively socialist ideology that’s had a damning effect.

One could be hard-pressed to come up with a single policy that the current administration has implemented that has or will enrich life in America.  94 million people are currently out of work – that’s a staggering number no one seems to be talking about anymore.  Only one state out of fifty has seen a reduction in medical insurance premiums under Obamacare.  And the Supreme Court recently had to place a stay on EPA restrictions that were about to be implemented by the Obama administration.  Those EPA emissions regulations would have dramatically placed a burden on the coal industry that produces most of the electricity in the US.  The end result would’ve seen electric bills doubling or even tripling for consumers.  Religious freedom is under attack, as is freedom of speech, and the right to bear arms under the guise of progressivism from the Obama administration.

It’s a safe bet to say the Republican nomination will either be won by Donald Trump, a celebrity outsider, or Ted Cruz, an antiestablishment Senator from Texas who’s favored by Evangelicals and the tea party.

No one thought Bernie Sanders, a professed socialist Senator from Vermont, had a chance against Hillary Clinton and the machine that she and Bill have created.  But, Mrs. Clinton has over one hundred FBI agents looking into her escapades with a private email server.

The country’s constituency will decide who relieves Barack Obama of his reign later this year.  It’s not hard to envision America standing at a reflective crossroads and that could explain the anger being expelled by citizens against the status quo in Washington, D.C.

The nation is at a pivotal point, it’s been fundamentally transformed into something unrecognizable.  Yet, for every individual who steps into the voting booth this fall their forethought need be one of reflection of what America was and has become.  Let us ask: “With the pull of a lever, what will this great nation be under the rein of a Republican or Democrat nominee?”

Greg Allen’s column, Thinkin’ Out Loud, was published bi-monthly from 2009 to 2017.  He’s an author, a former nationally syndicated columnist and the founder of Builder of the Spirit Ministries in Jamestown, Indiana.  He can be reached at www.builderofthespirit.org.

© Greg Allen ~ All Rights Reserved