The 2016 presidential campaign has been making headlines, leading newscasts and dominating cable talking-head shows for so long it's hard to remember when it wasn't being covered.
For many of us who feel inundated by this election cycle, the Nov. 8 general election can't come soon enough.
But as the finish line finally comes into sight, think about what you actually know about the presidential candidates. Yes, you know about the controversies each has stirred, the provocative comments they and their campaigns have made, the level of fame each has achieved and the accusations they have lobbed at each other.
But do you know what they'd do about the nation's opiate abuse crisis? How about health care (other than one supporting the Affordable Care Act and the other opposing it)? Where do they stand on voting rights, student debt, China, North Korea?
Most us probably have a vague notion at best on what the people who want to lead our country for the next four years would do about many of the most important issues we're facing.
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Amid the continuation of the shouting and daily uproars from the campaign trail, we're going to be publishing a special series that's aimed at helping our readers get some information on real issues. The Why It Matters series was developed by Associated Press and laid out by our regional design team. We will be running these half-page modules frequently over these final weeks.
The first two installments published in Sunday's and Wednesday's editions. Sunday's topic, American and the World, examined the broader foreign policy philosophical issues we're facing these days. Wednesday delved into the drug abuse problem.
These pages are informative not just because they give you some clear and concise details on what candidates have said about issues, but they also give you helpful context about the issue itself and why it's important.
All told, there are about three dozen of these Why it Matters pieces being produced, and our goal is to run as many as possible. Available space in the print edition will determine when we publish them in that format, but we do plan to create package showcasing the entire series for auburnpub.com.