So if you want to be victorious, you can either put the effort in to win or work to ensure your challenger loses. It seems that politicians often take the second route rather than the first. The result is the same (get the job or keep the job), but the costs are less, or at least seem that way in the short term.
"We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them." - Albert Einstein
This win-lose mentality won't solve the problems that the system has caused in the first place. Instead, we will have to do it ourselves. It will take - the blue collar, white collar, and civil servants; our artists and scientists; teachers and students; those retired and their grandchildren; corporations, non-profits, and government agencies - everyone who has a vested interest in our nation's success, but doesn't run for election. It will take people who believe that we can build win-win solutions, and then have the fortitude to make them a reality.
Remember also that supporting a candidate is not the same as making a difference. Don't sell yourself short.