Interactive graph with relevant opinion polls for the Trump-Biden duel at the national level (2020)

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Donald Trump, Republican Party

Republican Party was more on the side of reducing trade barriers and free trade agreements for decades. Republican President George W. Bush is most credited for signing the now-disputed NAFTA free trade agreement between the United States, Canada and Mexico. Donald Trump radically reversed this position of the party by starting trade wars with China, Canada, the European Union and others. Trump advocates a number of protectionist measures, such as tariffs, for the sake of raising domestic production and returning production facilities from the world back to the United States.
The Republican Party has traditionally advocated lower taxes and deregulation. In 2017, the Trump administration conducted a large tax cut for corporations and individuals, as a way to stimulate economic growth. Trump announced a reduction in labor taxes, as a measure to improve employment opportunities for workers and increase employee income.
The Republican Party is a party that expresses a high level of skepticism in relation to the human impact on climate change, as well as in the active role of the state in reducing carbon dioxide emissions. The Trump administration withdrew from the Paris Climate Agreement. In their election program, the Republican Party and Trump do not pay attention to ecology.
Although the Republican Party was a leader in the fight to abolish slavery in the 19th century, it has been moving to a more conservative policy on racial issues since the 1960s. Since then, individuals and groups with extreme right-wing and often racist views have emerged within the Republican Party, often manifested through the glorification of the slave-owning confederation. Trump’s position on racial issues is a matter of controversy in public opinion. Certain policies such as the reduction of mandatory minimum sentences were welcomed by members of minorities, while certain penal policies affected drastically more minorities. Trump often emphasizes the economy as important for improving the position of minorities, such as reducing unemployment in these groups or opening special “zones of opportunity” in poor minority areas.
Throughout history, the Republican Party has been more prone to punitive policies, including the harshest death penalty, than to rehabilitation policies. This policy was also called the “law and order” policy, which was created in the 1960s as a reaction to the great racial riots, which arose in the fight for the civil rights of African Americans. Trump called himself a “candidate of law and order” as a reaction to the current racial unrest across America. Although the specific policy in power was ambivalent on this issue, rhetorically Trump is sharper on issues of citizen security than previous Republican presidents.
The Republican Party is programmatically closer to reducing state influence on health issues and is more committed to regulating the health issue through market competition between private health insurance companies. The party also advocates reducing the coverage of existing state health programs. During Donald Trump’s term, the party and the president tried to abolish “Obamacare” and to implement certain restrictions on other state health programs. Although Trump promised an alternative health program in both this and the previous presidential campaign, no concrete plan has been revealed.
The Republican Party has been a relatively open party on the issue of immigration in the last few decades, where that attitude was the most liberal during the two terms of George W. Bush from 2000 to 2008. With the victory of Donald Trump, the party radically changed its attitude towards the very conservative. Trump is in favor of building a wall between the United States and Mexico, and he also proposed a ban on travel from certain countries with a majority Muslim population. His policy towards illegal immigration is an example of a “zero tolerance” policy. In the event of another presidential term, further tightening of immigration policy can be expected.
With the victory of Donald Trump, the Republican Party significantly sharpened its attitude towards China, which is based on the trade war between these two largest world economies and sanctions against Chinese companies. This attitude was accompanied by sharp accusations addressed to China regarding the spread of the COVID-19 virus, as well as a request from China to move its consulate in Houston due to accusations of espionage. China has remained one of the key targets of Trump’s election rhetoric.
Republican foreign policy was based on America’s active participation in world events, often through direct military interventions, such as interventions in the Middle East. However, with the victory of Donald Trump over the neo-conservative candidates in the party, the party changed its position. Trump’s policy is somewhat closer to isolationism, and during his tenure, the United States confronted a large number of traditional allies. In the Middle East, the current president’s commitment was focused on Israel and the establishment of relations between this country and Sunni countries.
Republicans and Trump are advocating for faster opening in order to recover the economy, even if the number of infected people increases, regarding the COVID-19 measures. During his tenure, he implemented several thousand billion in aid to individuals, companies and local governments. Trump is advocating additional measures such as a drastic reduction in labor taxes for easier employment.

Joe Biden, Democratic Party

For the past 30 years, the Democratic Party has advocated free trade agreements, such as the NAFTA foreign trade agreement between the United States, Canada and Mexico. The party advocated similar agreements with the Pacific and Atlantic allies, but softened that stance due to public opposition. Biden’s program also includes certain protectionist measures, such as the “Made in America” ​​program worth 700 billion dollars. This program would fund the purchase of products and industrial research produced in America, as a measure of assistance for about 5 million employees affected during the crisis.
The Democratic Party has traditionally advocated higher taxes for the richest and corporations. Biden is more moderate on that issue than the left wing of the Democrats, and his policy is based on increasing the income tax for the richest from 37% to 39.6%. The Democratic candidate is advocating that taxes for everyone who earns less than $400.000 a year should not be increased. In its program, Biden announces several thousand billion investments in infrastructure and green energy, as well as an increase in the minimum wage at the federal level from $7.25 to $15 per hour.
The issue of climate change is a very important issue for the Democratic Party and the voters of this party. Democrats believe that the human contribution to climate change is harmful and that it is necessary to invest in green energy. Accordingly, Biden’s plan includes $2.000 billion in investments in green energy and reduction of carbon dioxide emissions.
Since the enactment of the Civil Rights Act and other legal acts in the 1960s, which improved the position of the African-American community, the Democratic Party has become a progressive party in relation to racial issues. As such, from a party that has had racist individuals in its ranks for a long time, it has become the party for which the largest number of minorities vote in the vast majority. Biden blames Donald Trump and his polarizing rhetoric for racial unrest, believing that if he wins, he would start the process of racial reconciliation. He advocates greater diversity in the public service, including his hypothetical presidential cabinet.
The Democratic Party has always been accused of being “mild on the issue of crime”, ie more inclined to advocate for measures to rehabilitate offenders instead of a policy of severe punishments. During the 1990s, the party tightened its stance, and in 1994 passed the Law on Crime with very strict measures against the perpetrators of criminal acts and in relation to the powers and size of the police force. Biden’s campaign agenda represents a return to a softer crime policy through proposals such as abolishing the death penalty and investing $20 billion in grants to combat phenomena such as illiteracy and domestic violence. Unlike some of his party colleagues who are advocating a drastic reduction in funding for the police, Biden opposes the proposal.
Health care is an issue that the Democratic Party and its voters often put first in public opinion polls. The views of this party in health care are based on greater state intervention in health care. Although Biden does not advocate a complete replacement of the private health insurance system with a state one, his program includes the expansion of Obamacare as a state alternative to private health insurance. This plan is expected to cost around 750 billion over the next 10 years, and should be funded through the taxation of the rich.
The Democratic Party has traditionally been adorned with a generally open policy towards immigration and a more liberal stance on the issue of acquiring citizenship and visa policy. The position of this party is that migrants help economic growth and job creation, as well as that it is important for the United States to attract talents from all over the world. A similar policy is followed by Joe Biden’s program, which proposes pausing deportations in the first 100 days of his potential inauguration. In other program lines, Biden advocates stopping the construction of the wall towards Mexico and reducing penalties for illegal immigrants.
The Democratic Party and Biden are most often attacked by Republicans as “mild on the issue of China”, referring to the more open position of the Democrats on the issue of China’s inclusion in international organizations. However, the party has sharpened its stance towards China in the past four years. Biden’s plan in relation to China is based on the gathering of traditional allies and multilateral pressure on this country.
The foreign policy of the Democrats has traditionally emphasized the multilateral approach to international relations, but in certain spheres it has also followed the policy of interventionism, more characteristic for the Republican Party. There are different opinions in party on this issue, but the most dominant currently is the one that believes that America should be more active as a power in the world. Biden’s foreign policy proposal is based on a return closer to traditional American foreign policy and traditional allies such as NATO members or Pacific allies. In addition, the proposal is an informal international organization that would help coordinate actions and better cooperation of democratic states in the world.
Democrats and Biden are in favor of a more cautious policy on the issue of COVID-19 measures, ie gradual opening only when the level of testing increases. Biden suggests that the federal government help the unemployed, local governments and households more financially.

Recent TV appearances on the topic of the US election

Event photos from the series "US election 2020"


What are red, blue and swing states?

Red states are these states that almost always vote for republican candidates, while blue states stand for those who vote democrats. Swing or purple states present these states in which both candidates have the chances to win. Both republicans and democrats were winning in these states in newer history. Also, states that could possibly flip in the near future could be described as swing.

How is the US president elected?

People of the United States choose between proposed candidates. The winner in every state (except Maine and Nebraska) wins all of the electoral votes for that state. Each state carries a number of electors proportional to its representation in Congress: the total number of senators (each state has two) and representatives in the House (elected by the population). The six largest states are California (55), Texas (38), New York (29), Florida (29), Illinois (20) and Pennsylvania (20). Eventually, a candidate that wins at least 270 electoral votes out of a total number of 538, becomes the president of the United States. It has happened several times in history that the elected president got fewer votes in popular voting than the second-placed candidate, but due to the better distribution of votes by states, he won.

How do Maine and Nebraska deploy electors?

Nebraska and Maine are the only two federal states that use a system according to which the winner of the popular vote does not necessarily have to take all of the electoral votes. Nebraska divides its 5 electoral votes so that the winners in 3 congressional districts carry 1 vote each, and the overall winner carries the remaining 2 electoral votes. The situation is similar in Maine, with the difference that this state has one congressional district less, which means it has a total of 4 electoral votes. Nebraska introduced this system in 1992, and the only time electoral votes were split was in 2008 when Barack Obama won the 2nd Congressional District. As for Maine, the rule was introduced in 1972, and Donald Trump is the only candidate who won the district (II Congressional District), without being the overall winner in the federal state.