Trump vs Biden: a cheat sheet

With less than a week to go until the US election, THE FACE looks at where the two presidential candidates stand across six vital issues.

It’s the most contentious election of the 21st century, with a hotbed of – quite literally – life or death issues at stake. From the handling of Covid-19, which has currently claimed 220,000 American lives, to the questionable future of the landmark Roe v Wade ruling that protects abortion law across America, the outcome will dictate the nation’s future for years to come. 

Although a record-breaking 66 million have voted early (some 64 per cent of which didn’t vote in 2016), many more are expected to hit the booths on 3rd November. Here, The Face breaks down the Republican and Democratic challengers stances on healthcare, abortion, climate change, the economy, the criminal justice system and coronavirus for those still undecided. 

HEALTHCARE

Biden

The Delaware-born Democratic presidential nominee vows to protect the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), which provides healthcare coverage for 20 million previously uninsured Americans, despite facing continued attacks from the Republicans. He also wants to provide a public health insurance option like Medicare to all Americans, and is committed to defending health care protections for all, regardless of gender, gender identity or sexual orientation.

Trump

The incumbent Republican president has tried (and failed) to repeal the Affordable Care Act multiple times, with his latest attempt being at the height of the pandemic back in June. Instead, Trump has revealed the America First Healthcare Plan, which provides no tangible action in the way of coverage for Americans, but instead aims to only protect patients with preexisting conditions while promising to end surprise billing.

ABORTION

Biden

Biden has promised to establish nationwide protections for abortion that would stand even if Roe V. Wade were overturned. He’s also advocated for the end of the Hyde Amendment – a federal restriction that blocks the use of federal health coverage programs to pay for abortion, which subsequently hinders people with low incomes in affording reproductive healthcare.

Trump

There is no mention of official abortion policy in Trump’s second-term campaign. However, as a proud pro-life supporter, he has appointed more than 200 judges who are hostile towards reproductive rights, with the most high-profile case being the recent confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Moreover, Trump reinstated the global gag rule”, which strips funding from any international NGO that provides abortion services or even discusses abortion with patients seeking educational materials or referrals. 

CLIMATE CHANGE

Biden

The former Vice President plans to overhaul the country’s energy industry to achieve 100 per cent emissions-free power by 2035. To do so, he’s pledged to invest $2 trillion into a clean energy infrastructure, which will provide every American city with 100,000 or more residents with high-quality, zero-emissions public transportation options”, as well as promising to build 1.5 million new energy-efficient homes. While he will not ban fracking – a dangerous operation that damages wild-lands, Biden has committed to banning new fracking on federal lands. Finally, he will require public companies to disclose the climate risks and greenhouse gas emissions of their operations. 

Trump

The president, who once told the Washington Post that he doesn’t believe” in climate science, hasn’t stated any plans to combat climate change in his second-term campaign. However, during his first term he has begun withdrawing the US from the Paris climate agreement, which committed the US and 187 countries to keep rising global temperatures below 2ºC, expanded offshore oil and gas drilling and replaced Obama’s Clean Power Plan – which limited carbon emissions from coal and gas-fired power plants – with the Affordable Clean Energy rule, which has much weaker regulations. 

THE ECONOMY

Biden

The democratic challenger has cautioned against reopening the economy during the pandemic without increasing testing efforts. However, Biden has committed to raising the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour, which currently sits at $7.25 per hour, as well as proposing to spend trillions on creating new jobs in clean energy, manufacturing and caregiving. Finally, he wants to reverse Trump’s 2017 tax cuts by raising the marginal tax rate on the highest income earners back to 39.6 per cent from 37 per cent.

Trump

The president has promised to create 10 million jobs in 10 months, while also creating one million new small businesses. Furthermore, Trump has pledged to deliver an income tax cut, coupled with tax credits to incentivise companies to keep jobs in the country. He has no interest in creating green” jobs, nor does he want to raise the federal minimum wage.

CRIMINAL JUSTICE

Biden

Although Biden has resisted demands from the left to defund the police, he has pledged to create a $20 billion competitive grant program focused on incarceration prevention. Additionally, he will end solitary confinement, the federal use of private prisons and the criminalisation of cannabis.

Trump

Trump has been a staunch defender of America’s police forces, particularly in light of protests. His LAW & ORDER!” message rings loud and clear (he tweets it every other day), while his campaign promises to protect police funding and hire more officers, increase punishments for attacks on police and take action against Antifa – the left-wing political movement that has been challenging racial injustice in the United States. 

CORONAVIRUS

Biden

Biden has pledged to make coronavirus tests free for all Americans, while also doubling the number of drive-through testing sites and hiring at least 100,000 contact tracers. Biden will also work with governors and mayors to ensure masks are worn when people from separate households mix. Additionally, the democratic nominee will also ensure that America rejoins the World Health Organisation after Trump submitted a notice of withdrawal that, if he is re-elected, will go into effect 6th July, 2021.

Trump

Under Trump’s leadership, Covid-19 has killed more than 220,000 people in the US and infected nearly 9 million Americans, including the president himself. According to his second-term campaign, in 2020 he will develop and distribute 100 million doses” of a vaccine under Operation Warp Speed” – an initiative to which he has committed more than $1 billion. He will also make Regeneron’s antibody cocktail, the antidote he was treated with, free and available to all Americas, while refilling stockpiles and preparing for any future pandemics.


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