Breaking Down The Democratic Candidates

What are Biden’s policies again???

( @joebiden / Instagram)


In this election season, many of the Democratic campaigns made it clear that the main goal for these candidates was to be an antithesis to Trump. While it’s important to vote Trump out of office, it is also important to recognize that the Democrats will need to create more of a distinguished platform for themselves, one that isn’t wholly defined by Trump. 


It appears as if Biden has come to recognize this.  Biden’s campaign has shifted from more conservative to moderate, becoming increasingly liberal in attempt to appease both moderates and progressives.


I’ve gathered Biden’s current stances and their evolution on some of the most important issues in politics. Here is a quick guide on the Democratic Ticket:


1) Abortion

Then:

In the ‘70s and ’80s, Biden was publicly pro-life. He wholeheartedly supported The Hyde Amendment, which bans federal funding for abortion, except in the cases of rape, incest or threat to a patient. On top of that, he rejected the idea that necessary exceptions to the ban could be made. So in 1981, he voted to end federal funding for the exceptions made in the Hyde Amendment. 


Now:

Biden first expressed support for Roe v. Wade in 2007. It was recently, the 2020 campaign specifically, in which he expressed his views on the Hyde Amendment, saying that he no longer supports it. 


He’s expressed that in his journey as a politician, he’s come to understand that he cannot let his Catholic views get in the way of the decisions that he makes, especially those decisions involving women. The choice on what to do with their bodies should be up to only those who can get pregnant.


Biden’s shift on the issue of abortion has proven to mark a shift on Democratic politics. The party, as a whole, is moving to provide not only safe and accessible abortions, but also affordable abortions. 



2) LGBTQIA+ 

Then:

In 1996, Biden voted for the Defense of Marriage Act, an act that put marriage within the confines of between a man and a woman. 


Now:

As Vice President in 2012, Biden became the first national leader to support same-sex marriage, leading President Obama to do the same. Now, he fully acknowledges that same-sex couples deserve the same rights that heterosexual couples have. He also called transgender rights “the civil rights issue of our time”. 



3) Climate Change

Unlike our current president, Biden recognizes  climate change’s existances, calling it, “existential threat.” He’s said that one of his first goals as president would be to rejoin the Paris Climate Act, which President Trump left in 2017. 


However, he’s decided not to nurture the Green Deal, an economic package formulated by leftist politicians that would be the first step to dealing with climate change. Instead, he plans on investing in manufacturing green technologies, which would create more jobs. 



4) Healthcare

When it comes to healthcare, Biden’s strives to develop Obamacare, which would insure a projected 97% of Americans. 



5) Law Enforcement, aka the Police

Biden opposes defunding and abolishing the police. Rather, he wishes to reform the police. He concurs that the current policies  allow for weapons and resources that equate to that of a militia, which is inappropriate and unnecessary. Biden wants to take all of the funding that goes towards these departments and redirect them to other services, like mental health counseling and rehabilitation programs. 



6) Marijuana Legalization

Then:

In the past, when it came to marijuana legalization, Biden believed there was not enough evidence  to legalize it nationally. 


Now:

When it comes to drug policy in general, Biden has done  a complete 180. 

Now, he says that he doesn't think it’s a gateway drug, as there isn't any evidence that proves it so . He agrees to decriminalize marijuana and expunge those who have been convicted for possession of it.



7) Mass Incarceration


Then:

As we all know, this country has a history of mass incarceration, with most victims being communities of color, especially African Americans. In 1989, Biden responded to President George H.W Bush’s anti-drug plan speech and said that more prisons were needed in order to keep more citizens in jail.


Now: 

Biden has recognized that his past stance on crime was counterproductive and erroneous, and agrees that he should, and will, free those incarcerated for petty crimes. He also disagrees with the idea of more prisons, and, instead, has proposed more rehabilitation programs. 



8) Immigration

Biden promises to reverse all of Trump's decisions that separate families at the border and deny applications for refugees in his first hundred days of office. He also says that not only will he protect Dreamers, but will also provide them with federal student aid.



9) Marginalized Communities of Color

Biden believes that the social and economic marginalization and oppression of minority communities must be dealt with through his "Build Back" program, which would invest $30 billion to create business support for these communities.



10) Education

If Biden becomes President, he plans on developing tuition-free colleges, universal preschool education, and student loan debt clemency. 



And there you have it. Ten major issues that you might want to know Biden's stance on. 


Biden's evolved with the Democratic Party, and hence, has evolved with the times. As the Democratic Party has become progressive, Biden has adapted likewise.


Why? Well, the Democratic Party is changing, especially as younger Americans become old enough to vote and become civically engaged. Although Biden might not have it all, if we want to start improving what Trump so heavily infringed upon, he’s the candidate to keep your eye out for. 


So educate yourself, wear a mask, go to the polls and vote.










Anushka Dakshit is a Staff Writer at Rowdy Magazine. She likes to read, watch really long films, listen to old Bollywood, and listen to sad music when it rains. She wants to use her writing to discuss the nuances of womxnhood and culture and is passionate about social justice, femininity, and words that bring her catharsis. You can reach her at anushkadakshit@ufl.edu