Well, I am simply hooked. To what? To the American presidential elections. What a fascinating election it is turning out to be! In less than a month from now, more precisely on 4th November, Americans will choose their next President and the most powerful man in the world. The kind of system they follow simply proves why America is world's biggest democracy. USA is a biparty system consisting of Republicans and Democrats. Initially, from each party prospective candidates contest to secure their party's nomination. These contests are called primaries or caucases. These are informal meetings of people in which they decide who to pick as the party's candidate. That is why we had Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama fight out with each other during the Democrat primaries. The nail biting contest between Hillary and Obama in which Obama finally triumphed to get Democrat nomination was simply full of surprises. The Republican party chose John McCain who had a relatively easy path to leave out Rudy Guilani and Mitt Romny. Can we in India ever have this system that the prospective Prime Minister has to win the support of the people? We have Manmohan Singh who was appointed by Sonia Gandhi to be PM. He did not fight general elections. We were lucky that he is an honest man and has been one of our finest Prime Ministers. But we may not be lucky every time. Imagine the next election. If no party secures the mandate, then they will choose a compromise candidate acceptable to all as happened in Pratibha Patil's case. The American President has to go from top to bottom to be acceptable to the public. Anyways after both Obama and McCain were chosen, the next interesting fight was them picking their Vice -Presidential candidate. Obama chose Joe Biden, a foreign policy level expert to compensate for his own lack of experience. But McCain made a surprise move by picking Sarah Palin, Alaska Governor, Hockey mom who was virtually uknown and grabbed instant attention. The prospective candidates also have to fight three live televised debates where they state their positions on different issues such as the economy, foreign policy, etc. Can we in India have such a contest where prospective PM candidates debate live on television? Would we ever see Sonia Gandhi and LK Advani fight out with each other on screen?Absolutely Not! Another issue that is concerning American voters is McCain's age. He is 71. It seems a bit funny. In India, the average age of MPs would be on the higher side of 75. L.K. Advani is 80, Vajpayee was 83.Age is not an issue in Indian politics.
There are still so many unexpected turns in the American election that have the world hooked. If Hillary would have won the nomination, she would have become the first woman candidate for President and if she had won the election, she would have become the first Woman American President. If Obama wins, he would become America's first black President. If McCain wins, he would be the oldest President to be elected for the first time and Sarah Palin would become America's first woman Vice- President. Who would win the election. Well no one knows. Well I would like Obama to win. His VOTE FOR CHANGE message has inspired many and his speech given at a campaign reminded us of Martin Luther King's 'I Have A Dream' speech. Till the results come, I am simply hooked.