SURVEY SAYS: Questions for the Candidates

The Democratic presidential candidate debate introduced three candidates that I had heard nothing about beforehand.

Last week, I asked NewsDash readers, “Which candidates in the running for the Republican and Democratic nominations are you familiar with, and if you could ask the candidates one question, what would it be?”

Democratic candidate Hilary Clinton is the candidate most familiar to responding readers (95.5%), followed by Republican candidates Jeb Bush, Chris Christie and Donald Trump (each selected by 93.3% of respondents). Eighty percent to 90% of respondents were familiar with Republicans Carly Fiorina, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Mike Huckabee and Ted Cruz, and Democrat Bernie Sanders.

Other candidates ranked as follows:

  • John Kasich (R) – 46.7%;
  • Rand Paul (R) – 77.8%;
  • Rick Santorum (R) – 73.3%;
  • Lindsey Graham (R) – 51.1%;
  • Bobby Jindal (R) – 53.3%;
  • George Pataki (R) – 44.4%;
  • Martin O’Malley (D) – 26.7%;
  • Jim Webb (D) – 22.2%; and
  • Lincoln Chafee (D) – 26.7%.

Getting both parties to work together, the economy and trust were common themes in the questions readers would pose to the candidates. “Do you really believe everything coming out of your mouth?” and “Are you able to answer a question with a single sentence?” are examples of some of the less agenda- and character-related questions. And, in reading the questions, I learned what the Kobayashi Maru is.

Questions readers would ask candidates 

How would you enhance medical and social security benefits to ensure a secure retirement for all Americans?

It seems to me, so many serious social issues the U.S. has, relates to drug abuse. Why is no one addressing this issue and how to resolve it?

Ben Carson: Where have you been all this time?

What special powers do you have that would allow you to successfully contend with D.C. gridlock, and major parties that are hijacked by their fringe members?

How do you define democracy, and how does your definition relate to the tenets and vision of the founding Fathers?

Do you really believe everything coming out of your mouth.....

What makes you so sure you can make a difference/

You do realize that there are 535 other people (Congress and the Senate) that will need to vote your agenda items and campaign promises into law and that each and every one of those 535 people have their own political and personal agendas and campaign promises to fulfill?

What is your plan to bring down the cost of health care and prescription drugs in this country? Prices are outrageous and getting worse, not better. Don't say "undo Obama care" because that's a cop out for addressing the real issue and going after the real offenders who are profiting at the expense of the middle class.

I would ask Hillary Clinton why she thinks she is above the law and why she is such a liar and a phony.

Questions to candidates (cont.) 

Why should I trust you?

How will you get the federal government out of citizens' lives so that the country can generate true economic growth?

How do you intend to bridge the divisions in Washington and in our country (political, cultural, socioeconomic, race, etc.)?

What protection does an unborn baby deserve while it resides in the mother's womb?

What is the definition of social democracy and how does it fit with capitalism?

How are you going to work together with both parties to get things done? Also, will you be a president for all of us, republican and democrat as our current president has continually been demonizing everyone who is republican.

How will you stop the gun violence in this country?

How, and over what time frame, will you bring balance back to the federal budget?

Exactly what is your plan to get the American economy back on its feet? Please provide details.

Why can't we live within our means? Why can't we spend only what we make?

Questions to candidates (cont.) 

Why our representatives are letting government take over the people

Will you support repeal of the Cadillac Tax provision of the Affordable Care Act?

What are you going to do to get more bipartisan cooperation so that things can actually get done without all the finger pointing, slander and lying?

What would you say to prove to me that you truly love this country and have the highest level of ethics to lead it?

Hillary Clinton, "Why did you say for over two weeks (and to the families of the four assassinated Americans), that the Benghazi attack was the result of a video when you knew that it was a terrorist attack?"

What three things regarding your party's platform do you disagree with, but keep to yourself so you can win the party's nomination?

"Why shouldn't you be president?"

What would you do to end the deadlock in Congress and bring civility back to governing?

I'd like to ask the candidates "How have your actions in the past shown the American People you can be trusted to be our leader?"

Will you work to balance the budget?

Questions to candidates (cont.) 

Are you able to answer a question with a single sentence?

Why do you want to be President of the U.S.?

Do you think it is right that Obama continues to use his executive power so much in his term as President over riding the Congress and Senate? Would you?

We agree this is the greatest nation ever but we are a divided nation now. Considering the saying "United we stand as one nation"; what is the first thing would you do bring this nation together as one?

Without increasing taxes/fees, how are you going to pay for everything you promised? Someday the rich won't be there to tax.

How would you solve the Kobayashi Maru?

What is the real reason (a specific answer without generalizing the response to provide absolutely no actual thoughts) that you are interested in becoming president, which means having your entire life and the lives of those around you scrutinized to the smallest tidbit of information.

Will make sure the Cadillac tax is repealed?

If you become president will you, CAN you, move beyond mandated party line dogma and your big money donors selfish interests and do what is right for ALL Americans? (I think I already know the answer.....unfortunately.)

There was much concern expressed in comments left by responding readers about the quality of candidates who are running—“If Donald Trump wins, I will move to Canada,” one reader said—and the “mess” our government is in. One reader called the race so far a “circus.” However, some readers expressed pleasure with having candidates with non-political histories. Some say it is just too soon to pay much attention to what is happening, and others had suggestions about presidential campaigns and terms. Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who said, “This has been the most entertaining race I can remember. Can't wait for the next debate!”

Thank you to all who participated in our survey! 


Heaven help us if any of the unqualified misfits running in the Republican primary are elected president. The middle class is in enough trouble already and the poor would be totally devastated with a Republican in the White House. My fervent hope is for President Sanders or President Clinton.

I know for sure, that anyone with previous political experience has little chance of getting my vote.

It's time to elect someone who isn't a professional at politicking.

The process is fascinating every four years. So much power lies with the far right and far left elements of the major parties, that what it takes to gain the nomination may also doom their chances in the general election.

Throw them all out and start over. We need common sense, plain speaking, and an honest ability to work without the restraints of special interests.


Seems likes the race starts the day after inauguration. The race is so long and convoluted that unless you love American politics and posturing, who cares until the conventions?

This has been the most entertaining race I can remember. Can't wait for the next debate!

It's a joke on the Democratic side because all the men are afraid to attack Hillary Clinton. The Republican side has some good moderates like John Kasich who can appeal to reasonable moderate Democrats like myself.

If we end up with Bush vs. Clinton, do we need any other proof that the game is rigged?

Verbatim (cont.) 

So depressing -- all these choices and none of them inspire confidence or excitement for the future of our country. Perhaps I am just getting too old and cynical and have lost the idealism of youth.

I watched the democratic and republican debates and was shocked at the lack of highly qualified candidates on the democratic side relative to the caliber of republican candidates.

Our country is in a lot of trouble if at this point in the race The Donald is still on top of the Republican nomination.

Stop the taxpayer subsidies of the 2 major parties!

Why must the choice always be the lesser of two evils? Why can't we have strong, ethical, trustworthy candidates who, when their two terms are up return to their usual employment that is NOT being a politician or lobbyist?

While it's still early in the race, I would not vote for any Democratic candidates as I can't vote for a liar and law breaker and I can't vote for a socialist. And I don't want a TV personality in the office. At this point the only one making sense is Carson. I'm not convinced anyone but God himself can get us out of the mess we find ourselves in that Washington has created.

No one is capable of telling the truth, all are beholding to someone and will have to "pay the piper" if they win. Ross Perot for President!

Hilary for prison in 2016!

I wish all had a set dollar amount to spend on their campaign and that was it and that their commercials only could do with themselves and not what others allegedly do or have done. I am so sick of seeing the negative ads. Glad I don't watch TV much.

I keep thinking of the movie Brewster's Millions -- maybe None of the Above will win. (yes, showing my age in referencing this move!)

There is no such thing as 'free stuff.' Somebody pays.

Verbatim (cont.) 

I'd like to see two changes. First, a strong three-party system. Second, the President is allowed to serve one six-year term. That way he/she doesn't waste time with re-election efforts and has enough time to accomplish their agenda.

If Donald Trump wins I will move to Canada, I've thought that before, but never ever really felt it.

When did the Republican Party become a personality contest?

WAYYYY too early to get behind a candidate. Many of them will be dropping out, so I am not paying attention until I know who's left!

As candidates drop out, especially republicans, I would like to see them throw their support behind another, preferably Marco Rubio. It strengthens that candidate's position and shapes the race for a Republican victory. God help us otherwise.

Cut out the blame game "right wing conspiracy" and personal attacks "look at that face". Some of these candidates resemble petulant children.

Probably the most interesting in many years. Not sure where it is going to end up, but I think more people are listening this time.

There is no one on either side who you would say is really presidential.

I now understand why there's global warming, at least with regards to the effect of hot air on North America. Stand by for an empty breeze followed by the smell of the dump as the winds shift.

Overall, I wish we as a people would select real people, those that have lived real lives, have made mistakes and have learned from them. Scandal is one thing, real life is another and provides a background to make decisions.

Sick of it already. It's a circus with Donald Trump as the ringmaster.

Can't wait to see the anti-Obama screeds you're going to get from the right wingers. Here's one opinion that even with his flaws Obama is more on the side of, and wants to do the right thing for most Americans than any of those regressive, obstructionist, tea party puppet conservatives running on the republican side.


NOTE: Responses reflect the opinions of individual readers and not necessarily the stance of Asset International or its affiliates.
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