Just over a year ago, the Canadian election came to a close and Justin Trudeau was named Prime Minister. For many Canadians, the election was a time of hope for change, as Stephen Harper was finally removed from power. Trudeau was young, fresh-faced, and ready to lead the country. Mulcair and May were both solid options as well, and none had any scandals under their belt. Overall, the chances of a better Canada were looking pretty great, and coverage of the elections was largely positive.
The feeling is very different going into the last week of this election. As storm cloud after storm cloud rolls in to dump on one nominee or another, neither is arriving at the end looking positive. Instead of hope or anticipation, many seem to feel resignation or horror, which should never be the end result of democracy. Many supporters of Hillary view her as the lesser evil instead of an exciting, promising president. Many Trump supporters are just Republicans who can’t bring themselves to vote Democrat. Overall, whoever wins, the majority of the population won’t be genuinely excited, or hopeful—just happy the other evil didn’t get in.
Of course, it would be disingenuous to ignore that they both do have their small legion of adamant supporters. Many are still avidly supporting Hillary because she will be the first female president, and because she is incredibly experienced, even if there have been many knocks against her over this election. Many are aggressively supporting Trump in his fight against mass media, the election system, political correctness, immigrants, and so forth. Members of both categories will be ecstatic if their chosen one makes it in.
However, for most, November 8 is exciting not because they’re hopeful for the result, but because they want it to just be over. Last year, Canadians were able to excitedly look forward to the results. Eight years ago, America was filled with the same giddy anticipation about President Barack Obama. It’s sad that this election has fallen as far as it has. Now, the final choice is between pro-establishment and anti-establishment, and all the baggage both candidates carry. Will America have another Obama, just much less likeable? Will they instead elect an unpredictable man riding a cult of personality?
We’ll find out in one more week. Then we can all sigh, move on, and look forward to having some hope four years from now.