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The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

OPINION: The necessary three steps for presidential candidates

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With just under two years until the next United States presidential election, Americans are already keeping their eyes peeled to see who will run for the highest office in the land. 

On the Republican side of the ticket, former U.S. President Donald Trump has already announced he is running, along with former South Carolina governor and U.S. ambassador Nikki Haley, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy and former Montana Secretary of State Corey Stapleton. 

On the Democratic side, the only candidate to formally announce a campaign is author Marianne Williamson. Although many expect President Joe Biden to run for office, he has not yet officially announced his candidacy. 

Few things unite Americans in today’s political landscape, but 68% of voters in the U.S. think that Biden is too old to serve another term in the Oval Office, which begs the question — should the U.S. implement an “age-cap” on elected officials?

Although many voters may think that implementing such a policy would be in the best interests of the U.S. and its citizens, I would argue that this policy would not necessarily fix anything. 

Instead, I believe that the U.S. must take three crucial steps to ensure that any and all candidates seeking office are fit to serve. 

Step One: All candidates must pass a citizenship test. There are far too many politicians in office right now that don’t have an appropriate understanding of our nation’s history, its institutions or how the government works. 

If all elected officials were required to pass a citizenship test before being allowed to run for office, this would ensure those in office have an appropriate understanding of the country they are elected to represent. 

Step Two: All candidates, regardless of age, must pass a physical exam and intense cognitive screening. Instead of implementing an “age cap” on elected officials, physical exams and cognitive screenings conducted by an independent doctor would be far more effective than restricting the age of elected officials. 

As society progresses and humanity continues to advance in the field of medicine, it could become more common for humans to live even longer than today’s standards. If precautions were implemented, it could help to address the concerns of those who have an issue with today’s elderly population seeking elected office, without disqualifying capable candidates in the future, or even today. 

Biden’s age is not what should disqualify him from seeking another term, rather, it is his cognitive condition. Regardless of one’s opinions about Biden’s policies, his resume makes him one of the most qualified candidates for president in the history of the U.S. However, we live in a world where it seems like we are one wrong turn away from all out nuclear war, and the president quite literally can not make it up a flight of stairs or complete simple sentences

Step Three: All candidates for public office must be subject to term limits. While this doesn’t apply to the presidency, it helps to ensure that Americans can put their trust in a healthy government. 

Due to the concept of checks and balances, all branches of government should, in theory, have equal power. By implementing term limits, we can ensure that our government understands that it must work for the people, not the other way around. 

In the words of President Harry Truman, “Show me a man that gets rich by being a politician, and I’ll show you a crook.”

In order to ensure that the U.S. is able to remain at the top of the world stage and remain a role model for a healthy democracy, it is imperative that these three steps are considered.

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About the Contributor
Harry Murphy, Staff Writer | he/him
Harry is a junior Broadcast Journalism major from Walpole, Massachusetts. Harry is an Eagle Scout who enjoys being outdoors, and loves spending time with family and friends. In his free time, he enjoys running around the city, or watching any of Boston’s four major sports teams. After graduation, Harry hopes to work as a political correspondent.
Follow Harry on Twitter @harrymurphy1776

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    Jean AugustaMar 10, 2023 at 10:49 am

    Well done, Harry!

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OPINION: The necessary three steps for presidential candidates