A Speech by Meredith Hoppe, the newly elected President of the United States in 2036:

Men and women of the United States, as your new President, you have entrusted me to lead this country with dignity and objectivity. As our fore-father, Franklin D. Roosevelt, powerfully stated “The point in history at which we stand is full of promise and danger. The world will either move forward toward unity and widely shared prosperity – or it will move apart.” For many years now, we have been moving apart. As your leader, I will do everything in my power to begin to move this country forward into prosperity by focusing on peace and unity within our country. A united front is the best way to combat foreign evils.

Before the American people can be unified, the government which leads them must show cooperation. The first step toward a stronger union must come directly from the Commander in Chief which I why I will be appointing a cabinet and staff that is as diverse as the country which they oversee. My cabinet will be made of men and women of different races, ages, economic classes, educational backgrounds, and most importantly, political party. My job as president is to ensure that all of the American people have a voice— not just the economic and political elite— which is why having a bipartisan cabinet and staff with differing perspectives will move our country forward into peace and unity. The constructive discourse of being surrounded by respected individuals that will challenge each other and myself will set an example to the people of the United States. It will encourage meaningful conversations, open-mindedness, and most importantly, empathy. The one virtue that this country needs more than anything right now.

I am taking a page out of the book of our sixteenth president, Abraham Lincoln, by choosing a team of rivals to lead alongside me. In 1861, nearly 200 years ago, Lincoln chose to lead with a team of men who had previously run against him or opposed him. In a country that was deeply divided this approach made an impact on Lincoln’s success. A similar tactic was adopted by Barack Obama in 2008 when he chose democratic rivals like Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden to lead with him.

As I begin my time in office, I would also like to note that I will be choosing to travel modestly to save the taxpayer dollars. Although I will continue to use Air Force One for security reasons, I will be staying in local, mid-priced hotels and inns to do my part for local economies while I am on the road. During my time as President, I will only wear suits and dresses that the average American can afford. These actions, though they are small, speak loudly to the American people.

The first step to a more peaceful and united country has to start in government. I hope that by taking the first step as your leader, other members of government will follow. We must not lose sight of the fact that our strongest asset as a country is our families, neighbors, and citizens. No matter the differences in our lifestyles or politics, we are all Americans.