By Kaleb Wilson
Disclaimer: The thoughts and views expressed in this article are not the views of the Student Government Association, the Executive Board, or its members. These are the personal views of the author and are unrelated to any organizations he is a part of. Please take them separately as the thoughts of an individual. Thank you.
When I was deciding who to support in this year’s presidential election, I found myself strongly in favor of former Vice President Joe Biden and his proposed policies and views. Five major reasons for this were made immediately clear to me from a comparison of the two candidates’ speeches, websites, and histories. They are the issues of healthcare, taxation, climate change, rural communities, and LGBTQ rights.
Starting with healthcare, I am a supporter of the Affordable Care Act and the progress it has made in making healthcare affordable and available to all Americans. I support Joe Biden’s plan to expand and adjust the current system based on what we have learned in the decade since it was passed rather than repealing and replacing it with an entirely new system. Since the Affordable Care Act was passed, there has been an increase in the quality of healthcare that my family and many of those in my rural hometown have received. The protections for pre-existing conditions and accessibility provided by the ACA are incredibly important to maintain. While I am glad to see President Trump come to support protection for pre-existing conditions, I still favor the expansion of a currently functioning, albeit imperfect, system under Biden’s plan.
I also prefer Biden’s proposed tax plan to what has been passed under President Trump and what he has proposed for his potential second term. I believe that a proportional plan that aims to close loopholes and lessen the burden on the middle and lower class is the wiser choice, and Biden’s plan fits that view better, in my opinion. I believe that the plan proposed by the former Vice President would benefit America more, in general, by allowing for more funding of public works and social programs. America’s infrastructure needs to be updated and taken care of and I think that Biden’s plan is better suited to handle the task.
On the issue of climate change, I believe that Joe Biden would make more progress in addressing what I see as one of the most pressing issues of our generation. I disagreed with President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, which would take effect this November. Joe Biden has stated that he would rejoin said agreement and take steps to make the United States a leader in combating climate change. I see this as an opportunity to not only benefit our environment but our economy as well. Initiatives in the auto industry, public transportation, and manufacturing are all stronger in Biden’s plan than in the incumbent’s. Rather than proposing an immediate ban on fossil fuels, such as coal and fracking, Biden has proposed a plan to transform our energy infrastructure while ensuring that those employed by the fossil fuel industry are not left behind, as they have been in the past.
This leads me to my next point, the health and development of rural communities. I come from a small town whose primary industry was coal mining. I saw many of my friends and their families affected by the loss of jobs in the coal industry. I also saw the revival of our area’s economy due to the natural gas industry. This being said, both industries are unsustainable in the face of climate change and other pressing environmental health issues. Pennsylvania ranks 40th in the nation in terms of drinking water quality, according to the EPA. This is due in large part to pollution of the fossil fuel industry. Rather than making promises to revive the coal industry or maintain and expand the current level of fracking indefinitely, Biden’s plan recognizes that things are changing, and we must support rural communities through this change. By recognizing and planning for coming changes, I believe that Biden’s plan is better prepared to avoid the high levels of job loss that threaten rural communities if alternatives are not developed. Change is difficult but being unprepared for change will make our situation even worse.
Another community whose issues I am particularly concerned about is the LGBTQ community. The official platform of the Republican National Committee advocates for a repeal of Obergefell v. Hodges, which legalized gay marriage nationally. Biden plans to maintain the protections in place for this community and expand their equality, which I am in strong support of. Just recently Pope Francis, regarding gay civil unions, said that “They’re children of God and have a right to a family. Nobody should be thrown out or be made miserable because of it.” I could not agree more, and I believe that Joe Biden is the better choice to protect this sentiment and the LGBTQ community.
Overall, I see Joe Biden as the better choice for president. His positions and proposals would have a greater positive impact on my life, the lives of those I am closest to, and America as a whole.
Opinions expressed by outside contributors do not necessarily represent the views of The Review or any of its employees.