There has never been a modern election with so many presidential candidates.
One might think 17 is too many to navigate through, and in some ways it is, but these guys (and one gal) are all legitimate and qualified contenders.
The 2016 Republican field is 10 times stronger than last cycle.
Why so many candidates? Easy.
Citizens United. These candidates only need one to two billionaire donors or corporate advocates (which they all have) to sustain a long campaign.
Money buys eyes. Money buys clicks.
The record shattering debate drew 24 million viewers in the U.S. alone.
Put that in perspective: this year's NBA Finals averaged 19.94 million.
Tons of pundits predicted that if a candidate didn't make it to the main stage of the debate their campaigns would be doomed and end immediately.
Why? Citizens United.
All 17 of these ex-governors, senators, an ex-CEO, a neurosurgeon and a media magnet have the money it takes to run a long lengthy campaign.
This is the world Citizens United created.
Is it good?
If income inequality is the biggest issue of our generation, it's hard to say yes.