By Matt Jackson
Staff Writer

In the Oct. 2013 issue of New York Magazine, Hillary Clinton officially threw her name into the list of possible presidential candidates for the 2016 election. Over the course of the past two years Chris Christie has teased that he will campaign for the presidency in 2016 as well. While these two strongholds of the Democratic and Republican parties prepare for the next election, America is currently in a state of national and international gridlock. Two name just two messes, the House of Representatives threatens a government default and potential war in Syria remains an imminent possibility. As the country is caught in a time of turmoil, the political agenda seems to override the actual issues. 

It seems pointless to focus on the next presidential election when the country’s current state of stability is up in the air. The political cycle always seems to work this way. Our country becomes obsessed with the idea of a political battle, instead of focusing on its well being. If our country continues this harmful cycle we will remain in the position we are currently in. Our country’s nature is to sporadically jump from one state of mind to another. Instead of focusing on the troubles we currently face, we are worried about the next possible leader of the United States. This cycle is one that has been intact for decades. Worrying about the future of our country instead of investing in its present needs consistently hinders the work accomplished in our government’s highest forms of leadership. It is unarguable that Washington has become a town as obsessed with ever changing headlines as Hollywood. While some leaders attempt to accomplish legislature for the current time, their work is demolished by the majority of elected officials focused on pushing their parties’ political agenda in the upcoming election.

Washington is obviously obsessed with power. Both the Republican and Democratic parties seek to control as many levels of government as possible. The partisan focus on winning elections, rather than accomplishing actual reformations, keeps the country in a state of limbo.

While both Hillary Clinton and Chris Christie are rightfully respected in their parties, neither aims to change the current political agenda. Both potential candidates are currently focused on lucrative speaking events, and campaign preparation. The political idea that winning elections is more important than accomplishing reform, has reached a point of endangerment to our society. This value is widespread in all levels of government from federal to local. If all sides in Washington where to focus on stabilizing the current state of the country and its foreign affairs, necessary reforms could be better set in place. 

While these changes are unlikely to occur, the success of our country likely depends on it. The United States political system must abandon its current focus on winning in the future, to accomplish reform in the present. Yes, the outcome of 2016 is extremely important, but it is currently neither here nor there. In order for the Republican and Democratic parties to stand the test of time,  to make it to 2016, they must dramatically change the ways in which they currently operate.