With the democratic debates well underway, one student writer shares her thoughts on who she is endorsing this year
On Thursday Sept. 12th, ten democratic candidates gathered in Houston, Texas for the third democratic debate. While there were opposing views on stage, there is common ground in that their goal is to defeat President Trump in the 2020 election. Although each candidate has an equal opportunity to share their opinions and make arguments, there is one who has continued to come out on top after each debate, VP Joe Biden.
Polls conducted by Morning Consult show Biden is the clear winner with 33% of registered voters having Biden as their top choice. The New York Times also reported that Biden has a national polling average of 27%, compared to that of Elizabeth Warren with only 18% and Bernie Sanders with 16%.
So why is Biden pulling ahead?
Biden’s policies are appealing to a majority of Democrats, and as one of the more moderate candidates, his policies have a better chance of being accepted. With Trump currently in office facing criticism for his many controversial plans, the Democrats need a candidate who can “reverse” what Trump has done. However, while we are desperate for legislative change, I believe there is some fear in electing someone whose ideas are too far to the left, for example, Vermont Senator, Bernie Sanders.
Sanders is known for being the most radical of the ten remaining, and while his idea of free college is appealing to many, the severe increase in taxes is not. Historically, the majority of voters tend to support the moderate candidates of either party.
Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren is another appealing candidate, but her rhetoric has been described as too extreme and may be the reason her approval ratings are low. One of her main plans as president is to end Washington corruption. Warren has placed a lot of blame on Trump’s administration as well as the government as a whole. On the debate stage, Warren claims there is too much focus on money to focus on climate change and blames the government’s corruption. I believe there are greater issues to be resolved, for example, gun control.
Let’s take a look at a few of Biden’s policies.
Biden opposes Medicare for All and plans to build upon pre-existing Obamacare (Affordable Care Act). His plans include expanding Medicaid protection, protecting patients with preexisting conditions and building a government run public healthcare coverage option. Improving the already existing system will ensure the quickest solution for those so desperate for coverage.
Currently there are 27.5 million Americans with no healthcare coverage, so obviously we need a solution, but Sanders and Warrens’ Medicare for All is not the solution. Not only does it have a potential cost of $30 trillion according to Politico, it removes the option for private insurance companies. Forcing people to buy into government-run healthcare is not appealing to all, especially to those who are happy with their insurance company, and I can tell you, those same people will not be happy to see an increase in their taxes. This new version of Obamacare will cover those who need to be covered but will include an option to keep their healthcare provider.
In terms of gun control, Biden supports a voluntary buyback program, is in favor of universal background checks and plans to ban assault weapons. Gun violence is perhaps one of the biggest issues at the time, and currently our government lacks the legislation to restrict accessibility of assault rifles and other weapons. When it comes to climate change, Biden plans to reduce carbon emissions by implementing a carbon tax on businesses. Additionally, Biden supports ending offshore drilling and ending new oil and gas leases on federal land, as well as supporting the advancement of nuclear technology. Although the goal of net-zero emissions cannot be achieved just through legislature, these are steps in the right direction.
While some may argue Biden’s age (76) is concerning, let’s look at his competitors. Bernie Sanders is 78 and Elizabeth Warren is 70. While age is an important factor and justifiable concern, the policies and agendas of candidates are of ultimate importance.
Overall, I find Biden’s policies the most promising due to the fact they are reasonably attainable and moderate enough to be supported by the majority. Voters nowadays need someone they can trust has good intentions and a clear path to make things happen.
But if you don’t agree with me, make your voice heard and vote.
~Cana Wilson, Staff Writer~