Solomon is a chiropractor, a former Miami-Dade Democratic Party organizer and an unsuccessful state legislative candidate in 2018.
I recently joined the 30 percent of Florida voters who declare themselves independents. I did it for the same reasons as most ex-partisan voters: I had reached my limit. I was sick and tired of inter-party political hypocrisy and deceptive leadership. Unlike many independents, though, I witnessed the partisan rot from the inside. For over a decade, I was a Democratic Party activist.
Last year, I was the party's nominee for an open seat in the Florida Legislature in a historically Republican district. My party wrote my race off and didn't invest a dime in my election. No Democrat had come close to winning the seat in a generation. I lost by just 290 votes, less than half of 1 percent of the total votes cast.
Sarat is a professor of jurisprudence and political science at Amherst College.
Fresh evidence of the nastiness and divisiveness of the 2020 presidential election emerges every day.
President Trump has let loose a storm of invective over Twitter about various African American public figures and about the conditions of life in America's inner cities. The president seems bent on exploiting a rural/urban divide and creating racial cleavage as a way to get re-elected.
In addition, he has questioned the patriotism of Democrats and alleged that they are trying to "destroy our country."
Democrats have responded by denouncing the president's racially tinged language and accusing the president and his supporters of being the ones destroying the country.
"Four years of Donald Trump," former Vice President Joe Biden claims, "would be an aberration in American history. Eight years will fundamentally change who we are as a nation." Biden, of course, is running for president.
Nasty, divisive elections are nothing new in the United States. As someone who teaches and writes about the importance of historical memory in American law and politics, I believe the 2020 election will rival the ugliest America has ever witnessed.
There are lessons that can be learned from examining this election's parallels with two previous presidential elections – 1860 and 1968 – both of which left America deeply divided.
The period between elections for each federal office, used by the Federal Election Commission to set campaign contribution limits. A donor may give the hard money maximum to a House candidate every two years, a presidential candidate every four and a Senate candidate every six, for example.