By Linnette Cruz, 10th grade journalist.
With eight days to go until the desperately awaited Presidential Elections of 2020, Donald Trump is clearly being challenged by Democratic Party Nominee Joe Biden and is currently behind and losing the polls for what might be the most important election in United States history. Regardless of the outcome of these elections, whether Donald Trump gets a second term or if former vice-president Joe Biden becomes president of the nation, it is no surprise that this election will have enormous consequences for Washington and the rest of the world. Nevertheless, regardless of your political views and preferred candidate this upcoming November 3rd, it is important to know where each presidential nominee stands on a range of policy issues.
One of the most important and consequential topics that were addressed was the current coronavirus crisis, which has infected a grand total of 8.74 million U.S. citizens and claimed the lives of 225K loved ones in the United States. Democratic Party Nominee Joe Biden laid out exactly how his administration would handle the escalating COVID-19 cases during the last Presidential Debate of 2020 that occurred on Thursday, October 22nd. Additionally, at the Queen Theater in Delaware while giving a speech, Joe Biden stated that he’ll “reach out to every governor in every state, red and blue, as well as mayors and local officials, during the transition, to find out what support they need and how much of it they need”. Furthermore, he has previously specified that he will ask every governor to bring about a mask mandate in hopes of containing the COVID-19 virus. As for personal protective equipment and a potential vaccine, he plans on making gowns, gloves, and other necessities fully available for health-care workers, and stated that even if a vaccine is found fully working and safe, it would take months for it to be available to the public.
Moving along to Trump, he continued to downplay the gravity of this unfortunate situation, repeating that the pandemic “will go away” and that a vaccine will soon be on its way, disregarding the fact that cases are going up exponentially in most states. It is evident that the minimization of the virus on Trump’s behalf is a bad look for his campaign since he was previously infected with the virus – due to his reckless handling of it. The American people argue that Trump was previously informed about the severity of the COVID-19 virus, and would have prevented the 225K deaths of American lives. The only reason that he managed to recover so quickly was that he can afford health care, a luxury that over 44 million people in the country don’t have the access to.
Speaking of health care, Biden’s health care plan idea is to build on the already established ‘Obamacare’, or Affordable Care Act, signed by Barack Obama on March 23rd, 2010. According to the Biden Harris campaign website, “every day over the past ten years, the Affordable Care Act has been under relentless attack”. It also mentions how “President Trump has been unilaterally doing everything he can to sabotage the Affordable Care Act.” As president, Biden plans on protecting Obamacare, reducing health care costs, and “making our health care system less complex to navigate”. Along with Biden, President Trump also laid out his health care plan for the United States. “Trump said he was signing an executive order to protect Americans with pre-existing conditions, even as Trump and Republican lawmakers attempt to try to tear down the Affordable Care Act that already protects them.”, according to CNN’s Mackenzie Happe and Kate Sullivan.
As 2020 seems to intensify every month, the topic of police reform has been very prominent ever since the police killing of George Floyd back in May. While Biden has said that he does not support the Defund the Police movement, he does believe that there is a need for reform and funding for all police officers to have body cameras and effective training. As for Trump, he has created a wedge between the United States, disregarding the demand for the defunding of police departments and lack of effort to denounce white supremacy for good.
The United States is well known for its gun violence problems, it being one of the few countries to state the right to bear arms in the Constitution. Due to the fact that no one can really agree whether or not banning guns would be a good idea since gun ownership in the United States is the highest in the world, the US is very homicidal because of how easy it is for a citizen to obtain a gun in America. Many believe that the right of the people to keep and bear arms falls under the First Amendment, while others believe in stronger gun laws and tighter restrictions on purchasing said guns. As part of his campaign proposal, Biden has vowed to ban assault weapons as president. In regards to Trump, he stated that he wants to take action on gun violence and make background checks more challenging, but that’s all that he can really speak on the subject.
When it comes to education, Trump promised to fix student loan debt and has overall minimized the school policies that were previously established by Obama, such as the promotion of racial diversity in many schools and colleges. Biden, on the other hand, has planned to increase funding for schools in low-income areas and help teachers pay off student loan debts, among other things.
Last but definitely not least, according to NASA, “Global climate change has already had observable effects on the environment.” Climate change is accelerating, and scientists have predicted that if we don’t take charge now, the effects could be irreversible. Biden has been pushing for a $2 trillion plan to invest in producing clean energy and overall eliminate climate-damaging emissions made by the U.S. economy. Trump’s administration has not made the topic of climate change a top priority, and under this administration, the Environmental Protection Agency does not require oil companies to check for leaks of any kind.
Nevertheless, the question still stands: Will Donald Trump win a second term in the White House? As of now, Biden is leading the national presidential polls by about 8 points, yet we cannot be completely sure of who will win the election, given that having the lead when it comes to points does not guarantee winning the election. In the US voting system, 270 or more electoral votes are required to win the election. Now that you are fully aware of each presidential nominee’s plan to govern the United States, it is up to voters to determine the future of the country.