The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election: The Story So Far…

Harry Mear | Content Writer

Cast your mind back to April 2019 if you can, Biden announces he intends to run for the presidency, he has a strong following within his party and across the world the talking heads begin rallying to his cause. With a recognised and honourable career in public office spanning 36 years as a Senator for Delaware followed by two terms as the vice-president under President Barack Obama, one could easily settle for Biden when faced with the badly tanned alternative. In the early months of 2019, the Trump administration had recently emerged from its second Government shutdown (not to mention the longest in U.S. history) having been denied Senate approval for funding to construct the Mexican border wall. Following an unsuccessful attempt to surpass Congress for funding by declaring a National Emergency, the U.S. President faced failure on different fronts as plans to replace Obama’s Affordable Care Act stagnated and White House Personnel continued to drop like flies. Only meetings with the North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un in August acted as a saving grace in the eye of the electorate, and even those ‘discussions’ were ineffectual. Since those simpler times when toilet roll was aplenty and one had more spare change than spare masks, the Trump administration has enduring scandals galore, impeachment and the threat of war in Iran even before the first mutterings of ‘Lockdown’. But Trump continues to survive and thrive on lies and disgrace despite voting polls suggesting a Biden victory on election day.

A remarkable economic surge and tough talk in debates shows that the business bully we all love to hate is set to fight his way out of a corner with his beady eyes set upon those crucial swing states. In January 2019, Trump’s job approval ratings were at an average of 39% since inauguration, the lowest of any post-war president, and not an ideal start to a second year into the job. These approval ratings have since risen to 46% as of the latest Gallup Poll taken on the 27th of October 2020, an expected but concerning prospect for the coming election. Trump has drawn on a small economic recovery as America’s GDP grew at an annualized rate of 33.1% in the third quarter of 2020 according to a White House report. This increase set a new record for annual growth rate which more than doubled its predecessor set some 70 years ago in 1950 during the Truman presidency. However, this statistic must be considered during a time of record high unemployment, high poverty and unprecedented death rates in a country which experienced its worst ever GDP plunge in history. Therefore, the reopening of industry and business in the U.S. should be accredited to the apparent recovery than the actions (or lack of) and claims of an egocentric billionaire playing politics.

The swing states of Pennsylvania, Florida, Arizona, Wisconsin, Ohio North Carolina will play an essential part in this election and may also serve as early predictions as results flood in on election night with postal votes also playing an unprecedented role. According to a Times/Siena College poll Joe Biden currently leads President Trump in Pennsylvania, Florida, Arizona and Wisconsin, these key states have caused serious upsets over previous elections most notably in 2016 when Trump lost the popular vote by more than 2 million votes but secured victory through the uniquely American Electoral College. Polls currently predict Biden to win should predictions for these four battleground states come to fruition but one cannot disregard the dark horse that is the Trump campaign. The same polls of the 2016 election also predicted a democratic victory for Hillary Clinton yet these were drastically incorrect come results night and election polls have since been regarded with contempt and suspicion for their unreliability.

Should Democratic nominee and former vice president, Joe Biden, surmount Donald Trump, he will become the oldest ever incumbent to the presidency at the age of 78. Trump would serve his second term as the oldest ever sitting president and leave the White House aged 78, providing he lasts that long of course. In either scenario the highest office in American Politics would be governed by two ailing pensioners, a ridiculous circumstance considering the wealth of intelligent, ethical and young American political activists the nation has relegated to its side-line.

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