Riding high on the tides of anger and frustration, one candidate this year has seen a massive surge in the polls.
Born the son of immigrants in a borough of New York, this man is doing his best to win the nomination for his party.
Confident, daring and bold, he takes everything that the establishment throws against him and tosses it aside as if it means nothing to him.
An outsider, he may be running for the party’s nomination, but he is not of the party. If he were to be elected it would be due to a revolution, a massive movement of people heading to the polls in support of him.
He doesn’t toe the party line. In fact, it seems that he goes out of his way to trample the line.
A rather divisive point in his campaign is his stance on immigration. He feels that open borders hurt workers and that there should be restrictions on them.
In the beginning, it seemed as if he didn’t have a chance. Many people laughed at him and said that he was fighting a losing battle, that he was seen as a joke.
But through his dedication and his inability to be bought, this man has risen to the top of his party and is surging ahead in the polls.
He has also been known for his rather distinctive, never-changing hairstyle.
And while he might deny it to the ends of the earth, his campaign and political stances are rather similar to Donald Trump’s.
Indeed, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump are more similar than anyone, including the two of them, would like to admit.
Sanders is quite adamant on this, saying rather tersely in an interview on Meet the Press that his campaign is not like Trump’s.
However, despite his protests, the two have similar views and are going about their campaigns in similar ways.
In fact, when it comes down to it, they could be said to be two sides of the same coin. Both come from outside the establishment, using the anger and resentment of the middle-class to support themselves.
They have been able to capitalize on the frustration of the people to gain momentum.
The two have fundamentally differing philosophies, but their stances on certain policies are surprisingly similar.
While Trump is famous for wanting to “build a wall,” Sanders has said in an interview with Vox that he felt that open borders hurt American workers.
Both have said multiple times that they are frustrated with the current taxation system and that they would change it as soon as possible, although Trump has shifted a lot on this.
The big difference between the two is their stance on taxation and how they would approach it. According to Forbes, in 2011 Trump was in favor of extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, while Sanders has stated multiple times that he is all for increasing taxes on the wealthy.
It is on this point that it becomes clear that Trump, despite his appeal to the common man, is not the candidate who would support them. He is a man of the millionaires through and through, and his actions cannot hide that.
The reason he can’t be bought is that he doesn’t need the money. He was a millionaire long before most readers of The Appalachian were born.
Trump’s campaign is largely self-funded. Sanders, on the other hand, has received support from worker’s unions and individual donations.
The two candidates also differ in their stances on public programs, with Sanders being more generous in his support for those programs than Trump is.
He has gone on record calling out Sanders and Hillary Clinton for “giving away” too much in his October rally in Virginia.
Trump wears his persona of leader of the common man as a mask, while Sanders actually is that leader.
At this point, the two seem to be strong contenders for their respective party nominations. The Iowa caucuses will be the first in a series of many tests.
Time will tell if either candidate actually wins, but if they do and the 2016 ballot is Trump vs. Sanders, it is going to be an incredible campaign season.
Russell, a freshman Journalism major from Charlotte, is an opinion writer.