Our Pick for President

Our+Pick+for+President

Photo by Amber Wright

By Amber Wright and Luxe Palmer

The following editorial is the opinion of the Co-Editors-in-Chief, Luxe Palmer and Amber Wright, and does not represent the views of The Bear Truth, Palmer Ridge High School, or the Lewis-Palmer School District.

The upcoming Presidential Election will have an unprecedented impact on the future of our nation. In this tumultuous time, America needs a strong and unifying leader to help our nation recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic recession, police brutality and racism, wildfires, hurricanes, floods, immigration policies — the list goes on. At this pivotal point in American history, we the people are faced with choosing one of two imperfect candidates to become our next president. Both candidates have their strengths and weaknesses, but it has become clear which candidate is more capable of becoming the uniting force our nation so desperately needs. It is for this reason that the Editors-in-Chief of the Bear Truth newspaper endorse Joe Biden as President of the United States in 2020.

The unfortunate reality is that Americans today are divided by their political beliefs more than ever before in our history. However, this election is not about political parties. This election is about the American people rising to the challenge and working together to heal this great country. We cannot let differing opinions divide us. We must respectfully accept our differences, agree to disagree, and move forward. We must remember that we all have the right to express our opinions and be heard, so long as those opinions do not infringe upon the rights of our fellow Americans.

In this editorial, we will be looking at the strengths and weaknesses of both Joe Biden and Donald Trump, in order to evaluate our choice for November 3rd. We encourage all of you, our readers, to make your decisions based on the information you gather about both candidates and remember that actions speak louder than words. 

Joe Biden has had an extremely accomplished political career as a senator for Delaware from 1973 to 2009 before serving as the 47th Vice President of the United States for two terms. Donald Trump, before entering politics, was a businessman and television personality. President Trump became the first president in history to be elected with no prior government or military service.

Of everything that has happened so far in 2020, the coronavirus pandemic has had the most significant impact on not only our daily lives, but also our country as a whole. Although President Trump cannot be blamed for all of the negative consequences of the pandemic, it has become clear that the White House’s failure to act during the early, crucial months of the pandemic has caused this disease to spread like wildfire through America. Donald Trump has downplayed the seriousness of the virus to the public from the beginning. He did not authorize a mandatory shut-down to prevent the spread of the disease; he did not mandate masks nationally or even in the White House itself, despite evidence that masks do reduce the transmission of Covid-19; he has held large indoor and outdoor rallies that did not require masks or social distancing; he pressured states and schools into reopening for economic purposes. 

In March, Trump was recorded in a private interview with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Bob Woodward saying “I wanted to play it down. I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.” In another interview with Woodward, Trump said the virus was “more deadly” than even the “strenuous flu” back in February, but continued to dismiss the dangers to the public. The Atlantic published an article fact-checking the many false statements Trump made about the coronavirus. As of October 2020, the United States has reported over 7 million cases and more than 210,000 deaths, which puts America as the country with the highest number of Covid-19 cases in the world, and the numbers continue to rise. President Trump himself announced on Friday, October 2 that he had tested positive for the coronavirus. The White House is now facing an outbreak after most White House officials did not wear masks or follow social distancing guidelines. This sort of irresponsible and dangerous behavior has no place in the highest office of the country.

In the midst of a pandemic, the U.S. needs a leader who will take quick and decisive action to stifle the spread of Covid-19 in the ways that President Trump has not. Biden has a detailed plan to combat the coronavirus, including providing free access to testing, eliminating cost-barriers to COVID-19 preventative care and treatment, the development of a safe vaccine, and providing economic relief to Americans. Biden helped lead the Obama-Biden Administration’s response to both the 2009 H1N1 pandemic and the Ebola pandemic in 2014. He also helped lead the recovery from the economic recession in 2007, which included the implementation of the Recovery Act. With his experience and stable leadership, Biden has what it takes to combat the pandemic and help Americans get through this crisis.

While the Trump administration has completely failed to take decisive and swift action to stifle the spread of COVID-19, the administration did successfully pass the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provided $1.8 trillion in direct financial assistance to individuals and businesses beginning in April. This became the largest stimulus package in the history of the U.S. The most known feature of the Act was the cash grant of up to $1,200 per adult and $500 per child in households whose income was below $99,000 for single taxpayers and below $198,000 for couples. Americans are in need of a second stimulus check now that the pandemic has worsened, and elected officials are working toward passing one.

Health care is an extremely important political and moral issue, and it is especially significant during the coronavirus pandemic. However, the healthcare industry in the United States was facing a downturn even before the pandemic as a result of Trump’s destructive policies. Under the Trump administration, the number of uninsured citizens has swelled, costs have risen for Americans with marketplace plans, his administration worked to repeal consumer protections guaranteed by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and our country is now in a public health crisis. From 2016 to 2019, the number of uninsured Americans rose by a staggering 2.3 million people. Under Trump, it has become harder for Americans to obtain comprehensive insurance companies. As a result of the pandemic, unemployment rates skyrocketed, which led to many Americans losing their job-based coverage. The Affordable Care Act was designed to reduce the cost of health insurance coverage for those who qualify for the act (income cannot be above 400% of the federal poverty limit). Trump helped advance a health care repeal lawsuit to the Supreme Court that has the possibility of invalidating the entire ACA by next spring: thereby ending insurance coverage for over 20 million Americans, increasing the cost of private coverage, and eliminating consumer protections for the approximately 135 million Americans with preexisting conditions. Additionally, the cost of healthcare has increased, and the profits of insurance companies have gone up significantly. Read deeper into the particulars here. To sum, Trump’s handling of the healthcare system in the United States has been one of destruction; he clearly does not have the best interests of the American people at heart, and that is unacceptable.

Joe Biden has outlined his Biden Plan for Health Care, in which he will provide access to affordable health insurance for every American, instate a public health insurance policy similar to Medicare, lower insurance premiums, increase coverage, and work to improve the health care system as a whole. Biden would also work towards ending the abuse of power by prescription drug companies by repealing the law that prevents Medicare from negotiating lower drug prices, limiting the launch prices of drugs with no competition, and allowing consumers to buy safe prescription drugs from other countries. He will also restore federal funding to Planned Parenthood, work to reduce the United States’ outrageously high maternal mortality rate, defend the right to healthcare for all, and expand access to mental health care. Former Vice President Biden’s comprehensive, thorough, and attainable health care plan will put us miles ahead of where we are now regarding the health care system.

The economy was prospering under the Trump administration prior to the COVID-19 pandemic; however, President Trump cannot take credit for much of the growth. The fact is that Donald Trump inherited the successful Obama-Biden economy when he was elected. The average quarterly economic growth under Trump was 2.5%, which is almost identical to the growth rate of 2.4% under Obama, and did not meet Trump’s promise of 4% growth he made in 2016. President Trump rightly takes pride in having low unemployment rates during the first 3 years of his presidency at a low of 3.5% (lowest in 50 years); however, to be fair, the number was already at a low of 4.7% when Trump took office, meaning Obama saw a steeper drop in unemployment during his presidency than Trump did. Almost all economic growth/improvements under Trump were a continuation of the trends set by the Obama administration, so Trump’s claims that he created this great economy are simply not true. Read here for an in-depth analysis of the Obama and Trump economies.

One issue that weighs heavily in the minds of many voters is taxes. Biden’s tax policy may seem frightening at first glance, but the majority of his tax increases will affect only those with an annual income of over $400,000. He would also raise the tax rates for large corporations from 21% to 28%. These revenue from these tax increases would be designated to help fix infrastructure and fund clean energy, two of Biden’s main objectives. He would reverse Trump’s tax cuts, though. Tax rates will return to their pre-2017 values, which could cost some households up to $2,000 a year. It is important to note, however, that these tax policies are designed to increase government revenue, and Biden has pledged to devote this additional income to benefits such as retirement taxes, child care, health insurance costs, and student debt costs. Middle- and low-class families would likely see a long-term benefit with Biden’s tax plans. 

One of the most recent scandals involving President Trump is his 2019 tax returns. A New York Times exposé revealed that Trump paid $750 in federal income taxes in the year 2016. As a known billionaire, Trump’s tax returns are concerning. He first worked to conceal them by using his legal force to shield the tax returns from the public eye. Of course, Trump dismissed the NYT article as “totally fake news,” citing that he also paid “a lot of state income taxes, too.” It was revealed that he may have manipulated the system to achieve these incredibly low taxes; some news sources speculate that Trump messed with federal bank loans without repaying them and did not write them off in his returns. His expensive lifestyle ultimately contributes to the shock that his returns drew: Trump paid $70,000 in hairstyling alone during his business-reality show The Apprentice. He owns multiple estates across the country, as well as golf courses and planes to jet him from property to property. Being a man with a reputation as a successful businessman, living “the American dream,” Trump has actually filed for business bankruptcy at least four times- in 1991, 1992, 2004, and 2009. Three of the bankruptcies were related to his casinos, while the other was in regards to the Trump Plaza Hotel. President Trump is now facing immense backlash from his tax returns, with the Supreme Court requesting a subpoena to view his previous income tax returns. Trump has tried to appeal the grand jury decision but has failed. 

Biden, on the other hand, released his tax returns without resistance. The documents revealed that he and his wife paid about $300,000 in federal taxes in 2019, lining up with his gross income of $985,000. Vice Presidential candidate Kamala Harris’s tax returns show that she paid roughly $1.9 million in federal taxes, around 38% of her income, in the same year. Biden displays five years of financial disclosures and tax returns on his website for all to see.

Public outcry and protests against police brutality and systemic racism have been sweeping the country this year. Joe Biden has openly and directly condemned police brutality against minorities. However, we must also acknowledge the fact that Biden has made some racially insensitive comments in the past. On a radio talk show, Biden told popular African American radio host Charlamagne Tha God “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black.” Biden later said he “shouldn’t have been such a wise guy.” With this in mind, Biden has made concrete statements denouncing police brutality, and he also introduced the Biden Plan for Strengthening America’s Commitment to Justice. This plan outlines concrete steps to reform our police system without taking away the safety of our citizens: investing in and requiring body cameras on police officers, taking racial sensitivity training and racial disparity elimination to the next level– the U.S. Justice Department– and healing the criminal justice system at its roots. Biden plans to expand programs involving mental health help, addiction treatment, education for poorly-funded districts, and essentially shift the system “from incarceration to prevention.”

President Trump’s plan of action in response to the police brutality protests and movements is one of dismissal: “I don’t believe that.” Trump has refused to openly acknowledge systemic racism and white privilege in America, claiming that race sensitivity training is unnecessary and “unpatriotic.” In response to the Black Lives Matter movement and the cry for police reform and possible defunding, Trump called the protestors “thugs” that are “looking for trouble.” Though rioting and robbing stores to protest the government is deplorable and illegal, Trump’s tweet stating “if the looting starts, the shooting starts” was uncalled for. After the violent Neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Trump said there were “very fine people on both sides,” a comment that he has since attempted to defend. During the first presidential debate, Trump refused to condemn white supremacists, instead, he said “Proud Boys — stand back and stand by.” To sum up, Trump has not shown any initiative to work to improve the police force and address the issue of racism head-on; his own insensitive comments should not be overlooked.

As a senator, Biden introduced a bill that was signed into law as the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in 1994. The VAWA supports and funds efforts against domestic and dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking, which was a catalyst for the passage of hundreds of state laws that prohibited family violence and provided resources to set up shelters for victims. “I consider the Violence Against Women Act the single most significant legislation that I’ve crafted during my 35-year tenure in the Senate,” said Joe Biden.

Biden has also announced that he is pro-choice, and as president, Biden would ensure safe and legal access to abortions for all women. Biden has outlined his Agenda for Women, focusing on inordinately disadvantaged women of color and minority groups by expanding healthcare coverage and childcare opportunities, improving economic security, and overall empowering women “around the world.” He will fight for equal pay and ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution, as well as invest in female-owned businesses, expand access to education and training, improve affordable child care, expand access to quality and affordable health care for all women, and end violence against women. 

At this point, it is important to note that Biden has grappled with his stance on abortion for quite some time due to his Roman Catholic faith. Roe v. Wade (1973) was a significant Supreme Court ruling that protects a pregnant woman’s right to choose to have an abortion without too much government restriction. During his second term as senator of Delaware, Biden voted in support of a constitutional amendment that would allow individual states to overturn Roe v. Wade. Biden labeled the decision as “the single most difficult vote I’ve cast as a U.S. senator.” This amendment, however, never reached the full Senate, so when it came back up to vote on a year later, Biden voted against it. Biden also supported the Hyde Amendment (1976), which bans federal funding of abortions except for those in cases of rape, incest, and if the life of the mother is in danger, for some years. He abruptly switched to the opposition of the Hyde Amendment in June of 2019, while he was seeking the Democratic nomination for president. Because the amendment particularly burdens low-income women, Biden reversed his stance, saying “If I believe healthcare is a right, as I do, I can no longer support an amendment that makes that right dependent on someone’s ZIP code.” He explained that the amendment stands in the way of his goal of equal coverage, so Biden now opposes the Hyde Amendment and is pro-choice. While Biden’s change of stance does not completely erase the fact that he did not support safe and legal abortions in entirety, this shows that Biden is capable of modifying his stances to more adequately serve the United States.

On the other hand, Donald Trump has no plans to push forward with equality for women and minorities. The Trump administration has been actively working to defund Planned Parenthood, which provides reproductive healthcare by providing contraceptives, STD tests, cancer screenings, wellness checks, abortions, and other services. He also suspended an Obama administration wage gap initiative that made businesses disclose their pay rates by gender. Trump has mocked the #MeToo movement that allowed so many women to have a voice in the cry against rape and sexual assault, stating it went against the “innocent until proven guilty” policy that he holds. Trump reinstated the Mexico City Policy, or the “global gag rule,” that does not allow foreign nongovernmental organizations to use US global health assistance funds for abortion-related activities, which drastically reduces access to safe abortions in other countries. His administration disbanded the White House Council on Women and Girls in 2017 that Obama first started to ensure that policies covered the needs of females. Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh, who has had multiple allegations of sexual misconduct levied against him, shows how little respect he has for women and their rights.

Donald Trump has also displayed the fundamental shortcomings in his character through his multiple affairs and sexual assault allegations. He had an affair with Marla Maples while married to his first wife Ivana Zelníčkova. He then divorced Ivana and married Maples in 1993. Trump later had an affair with adult film actress Stormy Daniels in 2006, one year after marrying his current wife Melania Trump. Michael Cohen, Trump’s former personal attorney, paid Stormy Daniels $130,000 to sign a non-disclosure agreement about the affair just before the 2016 election. As of 2020, 26 women have accused Donald Trump of sexual assault, rape, and sexual misconduct, spanning all the way back to the 1970s. He has denied every single allegation and called the women liars. This information alone shows that Trump lacks the quality of character necessary to be a fit President.

While Trump has denied the sexual allegations levied against him, his countless comments against women in interviews, conversations, and his personal Twitter account are visible to all. President Trump called 1996 Miss Universe beauty pageant winner Alicia Machado “Miss Piggy” and “Miss Housekeeping.” Trump later called comedian and The View host Rosie O’Donnell “a loser. A real loser.” He went on to say, “I look forward to taking lots of money from my nice, fat, little Rosie.” This is one comment among the dozens of insults targeted towards O’Donnell, both on Twitter and in conversations. During one presidential debate in 2016, on national television, Donald Trump called Hilary Clinton a “nasty woman.” These sorts of comments are absolutely unacceptable for any person to speak, much less the President of the United States.

While President Trump has had a more scandalous and colorful portfolio of his treatment of women, Joe Biden is also not free of similar charges. In March of 2020, Tara Reade accused Biden of sexually assaulting her in 1993 while she worked as a staff assistant. Though her story has some inconsistencies, she should not be simply dismissed. As of now,  seven other women have accused Biden of invading their personal space or touching them inappropriately, and all seven women have said Biden’s behavior was not sexual harassment or assault. “If I made anyone feel uncomfortable, I feel badly about that. It was never my intention,” said Joe Biden when asked about the accusations. Now, neither candidate is wholly innocent in this matter, but it is important to note the difference in the severity of the accusations.

As Vice President, Biden championed the DACA and DAPA programs that worked towards helping illegal/undocumented immigrants seek citizenship. Biden has condemned Trump’s failed and inhumane immigration policy, and will work towards reversing the damage should he be elected president. Joe Biden has detailed the Biden Plan for Securing Our Values as a Nation of Immigrants that will serve to fix the immigration crisis by taking urgent action to undo the damage done by the Trump administration, modernizing the country’s immigration system, renewing America’s dedication to aiding asylum seekers and refugees, and establishing effective border screening. All of these plans would serve our country far better than the failed plan to build a wall, policies that separated families at the border, locking immigrant children in cages, and performing unnecessary hysterectomies on immigrant women as we see under the Trump administration. We cannot allow such abuse of other humans any longer.

President Trump’s foreign policy remains one of his most controversial platform stances to date. In 2016, he started his campaign off with a bold and highly controversial proposal: to build a wall between the United States and Mexico, from coast to coast, and Mexico would pay for it. Trump has consistently voiced his disdain for immigrants and his foreign policy reflects it. In 2017, less than a week after his inauguration, Trump withdrew America from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and signed a 90-day travel ban on eight predominantly-Muslim countries. But his stubborn attempts to cut America off from much of the rest of the world have so far fallen short. Over $15 million has been diverted to the wall, and only about 30 miles of the new wall, out of the 2,000-mile border, has been built so far. These funds also went towards improving over 500 miles of pre-existing walls. As most of us expected, Mexico rightly refused to pay for the wall as Trump blindly promised throughout his campaign. Regardless of how much of the wall Trump has built and how much was pre-existing, building a concrete wall between us and our neighboring country does not reflect well on America as a whole; it promotes a policy of distrust, unfriendliness, and hostility to foreign countries. 

Trump has been regarded widely among foreign leaders in a variety of reactions. Some leaders, such as Egyptian president Abdul Fattah al-Sisi, praised Trump for his “deep and great understanding” of the Middle East. Others, such as Canadian president Justin Trudeau, have seen strained relationships with Trump. After Trump left the G7 summit last June, Trudeau expressed his distaste for the president and that he “would not be pushed around.” Trump has also committed embarrassing blunders while interacting with leaders, such as walking in front of Great Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II, to her annoyance. 

As Vice President Pence has reminded us in the recent Vice Presidential debate, the Trump Administration has had a few successes in foreign policy, such as recognizing Jerusalem as the center of Israel’s government, breaking up an ISIS caliphate, and assassinating Iranian general Qassem Soleimani. He has also promised to return troops home from Afghanistan and Syria– which seemed like a positive move, but the abandonment of our Kurdish allies simply reflected Trump’s toxic “America first” ideals– and he signed a peace deal with the Taliban and announced a cease-fire. Though these actions may have future consequences, such as with the Taliban not holding their end of the agreement, they are a step in the right direction. 

Joe Biden, on the other hand, is focused on reuniting the United States with the rest of the world. He will reenter the Paris Agreement that Trump had previously withdrawn from in order to fight climate change. Biden will also narrow down Chinese-product tariffs to reflect existing trade laws in order to bring production back to America in a stable manner, specifying tariffs. Biden plans to modernize the Obama administration’s take on counterterrorism, such as ensuring that the remaining fragments of Al-Qaeda and ISIS cannot reconvene, as well as reversing Trump’s travel ban on Islamic countries. In response to foreign military intervention, Biden stated that “we need a real strong dose of humility about [our] capacity to fundamentally alter circumstances around the world.” His goal is to create a “Summit for Democracy,” that will reunite all democratic nations in order to further efforts of anti-authoritarianism and anti-corruption. Biden condemns Trump’s “admiration for autocrats,” referring to his friendliness with dictators such as Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong Un. Biden has shown that his foreign policy is dedicated to healing the bonds between America and our foreign neighbors, as well as putting direct attention on climate change and immigration.

 In the Biden Plan for Climate Change, Joe Biden has extensive plans for how to combat climate change as both a singular nation and with the rest of the world. Nationally, Biden will work towards having a completely clean energy economy by 2050, build and improve energy, water, and transportation infrastructure, and take action against polluters mainly harming low-income communities and communities of color. He will recommit the U.S. to the Paris Agreement on climate change and work climate change into our foreign policy with other countries. All of such are in stark contrast with Trump’s precedence of de-regulating corporations, reducing environmental standards, and denying the existence of climate change. For a list of the major ways in which Trump has impacted the environment, read this article by National Geographic. Trump has failed to take action in aiding states/territories in the aftermath of natural disasters. Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico three years ago, and Trump finally promised nearly $13 billion in federal disaster funding to them six weeks before the election. When Trump visited Puerto Rico soon after the hurricane struck, President Trump decided to throw paper towels into the crowd, rather than actually helping the citizens. This shameful act should not be forgotten. To top it off, Trump has tweeted/spoken conflicting positions on climate change, including dismissing it and saying it is “very important to me,” making it clear that the state of the environment is a political rather than a moral issue to him.

One thing Trump did well involving the environment, though, was signing the Great American Outdoors Act, which will provide the needed funds (up to $1.29 billion over 5 years) to complete maintenance projects. This will allow for the infrastructure of the parks to be improved. The Outdoors Act also provides permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LCWF).

President Trump’s disdain for the men and women that have served our country is obvious when you look at his many disparaging comments levied against veterans, including calling veterans “losers” and “suckers.” Joe Biden has condemned these comments made by the President, calling them “deplorable” and “un-American.” “I’ve just never been as disappointed in my whole career with a leader that I’ve worked with, president or otherwise,” said Joe Biden. Donald Trump– who dodged the draft to Vietnam five times by citing his education four times, then because of alleged bone spurs in his heels after he graduated from college– has no concept of selfless service or basic human decency. President Donald Trump has made countless xenophobic, racist, sexist, transphobic, and hateful comments, and they must be taken into consideration as a reflection of his character come election day. Biden, however, has outlined his Biden Plan for Veterans, in which he will provide quality healthcare to veterans, lower homelessness and suicide rates among veterans, provide educational and employment opportunities, and improve VA management.

Donald Trump has refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power to whichever candidate wins the presidential election. He has largely criticized mail-in ballots as fraudulent, with no evidence to back that up, and has worked to sow doubt among Americans before the election. “Get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a very peaceful — there won’t be a transfer, frankly. There will be a continuation,” President Trump said in September. In this quote, Trump outright states that by denying citizens their democratic right to vote, he will be re-elected. It is absolutely unacceptable for our President to so openly and maliciously oppose our democratic process. Biden has directly stated that he will accept the outcome of the election. “I will accept and he will too, because you know why, once the winner is declared, that will be the end of it,” Biden said during the first presidential debate. “And if it’s me, fine, if it’s not me, I’ll support the outcome.” 

We also must address the fact that Donald Trump became the third president in history to be impeached in 2019. The House of Representatives approved two articles of impeachment against President Trump, one for abuse of power in his dealings with Ukraine, and the other for obstruction of Congress in his attempts to shut down the impeachment inquiry. Trump withheld $400 million of congressionally approved military aid to Ukraine while at the same time pressuring Ukraine’s president to investigate Former Vice President Biden as well as Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, who had served on the board of a Ukrainian gas company. Senators voted to acquit Donald Trump on both articles of impeachment during the trial in the Senate. Donald Trump is the first impeached president to seek re-election. After such a disgraceful and criminal act, Trump has shown that he is absolutely not fit to be the Commander-in-Chief of the U.S.

If Donald Trump is famous for one thing in particular, it is his Twitter account. During his four-year presidency, Trump has sent out over 20,200 tweets. He averages at around 14 tweets a day, at all hours of the day and night, and over 5,000 tweets a year. The subjects of these range from commentary on congressional decisions, false statements, complaints about various organizations, and insults aimed at his opposition. He announces his opinions to the world on a regular basis, such as when he tweeted the following on July 24, 2018: “Tariffs are the greatest! Either a country which has treated the United States unfairly on Trade negotiates a fair deal, or it gets hit with Tariffs. It’s as simple as that- and everybody’s talking! Remember, we are the ‘piggy bank’ that’s being robbed. All will be Great!” On June 19, 2018, Trump tweeted, “Democrats are the problem. They don’t care about crime and want illegal immigrants, no matter how bad they may be, to pour into and infest our Country, like MS-13. They can’t win on their terrible policies, so they view them as potential voters!” The topics of the tweets are strange enough, and his fondness of all-caps, exclamation points, terrible grammar, and elementary word choice that characterize his tweets only makes the subject matter even more questionable. Should our president be spending this much time on social media, and sharing the majority of his policies, official statements, and random commentary through it? 

As both presidential candidates would become the oldest president to be elected in the history of America, one must look at the vice-presidential candidates closely as well. Biden’s running mate is California senator Kamala Harris. Harris has strong policies on immigration, climate change, and foreign relations, parallel to Biden. She plans to use executive power to expand the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) as well as protect the undocumented families of legal immigrants in order to avoid separation. Kamala plans to reverse Trump’s travel ban on many Muslim-majority countries. Harris is prioritizing the critical reformation of ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) without completely disbanding it; any ongoing constructions of ICE detention facilities will be halted and new detention facilities will be banned from development. Along with her running mate, Harris is putting climate change at the forefront of their campaign. Her goal, net-zero carbon emissions by 2045, can be reached by investing $10 trillion into infrastructure, clean energy technologies, and the Green New Deal. Harris also wants to heal and strengthen the bonds between America and foreign countries that Donald Trump has imperiled. She plans to reinstate connections with NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) and take a stand against North Korea, Russia, and the Islamic State. Harris is calling for more support to Venezuelan asylum seekers and wants to give temporary protected status to Venezuelan workers already in America. As the first female Vice President, Kamala Harris would prioritize the bonds between allies of the United States and work with them to conquer rising oppressive powers. Harris’s story is one of success and accomplishment, and she is what our nation needs right now.

Donald Trump’s current Vice President, Mike Pence, has been a silent but powerful force in the Trump administration. Pence was instated as the head of the coronavirus pandemic response back in February, and his first course of action was to shut down the cruise ship industry. This position put Pence in charge of the country-wide response to the pandemic, including testing, production and distribution of protective gear, mandating public health guidelines, aiding in the production of a vaccine, spreading correct information about the virus to the public, and more. However, the White House coronavirus task force failed in just about every regard. Pence admitted to not having enough testing, he claimed there would be no second wave of the virus, and he pushed for loosening CDC guidelines for reopening schools. Essentially, he carried out Trump’s ineffective and deceitful coronavirus policies. Pence is sternly pro-life when it comes to abortion and was the tie-breaking vote in the bill to defund Planned Parenthood. In 2004, Pence helped sponsor an amendment to the Constitution that would define marriage as a union between one man and one woman, a strong push against LGBTQ+ rights. He has voted against prohibiting discrimination against LGBTQ+ individuals in a job interview and the expansion of the hate-crime protection plan. Vice President Pence has shown himself to be the sort of leader that America cannot tolerate or look to for aid when necessary.

Joe Biden is not a perfect candidate. He will not be a perfect president. But perfection is not integral to politics. Rather, we need a strong leader to unite and heal our country, and Joe Biden is our best choice for this presidency.