Will Brexit foreshadow presidential election?

Published 11:57 pm Friday, June 24, 2016

“Now it’s our time.”

So says U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama, who offered his opinions on the historic Brexit vote this week.

The United Kingdom vote on Thursday paves the way for the UK to exit the European Union. It was a fiercely debated move in a country deeply divided over the proper course. The Brexit passed with the narrowest of margins – 51 percent to 49 percent – sending a shocked global community and financial markets into a tailspin on Friday.

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But not Sen. Sessions or Donald Trump, presumptive Republican nominee in the presidential race. Sessions was quick to point out the parallels between the Brexit vote and the upcoming presidential election here in the United States.

Both countries are deeply divided, and passions run deep on both sides of the debate. In the UK, the issue was simply stay or go. In the U.S., the issue is choosing a leader: a presumptive Democratic nominee with a history of shady practices and liberal polices or an unproven, bombastic Republican whose every action seems to fly in the face of convention.

According to Sessions and Trump supporters, the November presidential election is shaping up to be a challenge against establishment forces, a rally cry against the real and dangerous threats to our economic well-being and safety.

Brexit and the presidential race are both driven by economic and safety issues: fears that the global economy remains uncertain, nearly 10 years after the 2008 economic collapse; increasing violence in the Middle East and the immigration crisis it creates; and valid fears about safety, particularly in the wake of deadly attacks in Orlando, California, Belgium and Paris.

The masses are yearning for a change, for someone or something to offer a hope of safety and stability.

In the UK, that change comes in the form of Brexit.

In the United States? Well, Sen. Sessions believes it will come in the form a new leader, for a new age.

“Now, it’s our time.”