The Candidate (1972) embodies what it is like for an unknown to compete against an entrenched incumbent for the United States Senate. The film, which starred Robert Redford, Melvyn Douglas, and Peter Boyle, was written by Jeremy Larner, who was the head speechwriter for Eugene McCarthy in his 1968 bid for President. Shot in a pseudo-documentary style which is common place in many television shows and movies today, The Candidate provides serious and comic moments in how a campaign works. This is done all through the lens of someone who once worked for a Presidential campaign. The Candidate is a compelling piece of cinema from the early 1970s. Perhaps that even with the film’s star power and sobering screenplay, it is the film’s final scene that demonstrates the disconnect between campaign for office and the reality of actually holding office.
After this year’s November election, what do we do now? Something to think about and answer: What should those candidates who win/won on Tuesday, November 6 at the national level (President, Senate, House) confront as their first priority in the new year?