03 July 2020 ~ 1 Comentario

Biden, Trump and the 2020 elections

By Carlos Alberto Montaner

On Tuesday, November 3, 2020 there will be 12 key elections in the United States. Not 1 or 50, but 12. Those are the “swing states.” As the elections, according to the Constitution, are decided in the Electoral College and not in the ballot boxes, vote by vote, it is according to this peculiar institution where the bitter contest is organized.
Today the “swing states” are, in alphabetical order: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin. These are states in which elections are very close and, therefore, can change sides, ashas happened in the past.

As Al Gore and Hillary Clinton bitterly recall, it is possible to win at the ballot box as a democracy and lose the general election as a republic. After all, the United States is a law-abiding republic and not a Rousseau-style democracy governed by a pure and simple majority. In the 2016 election, Hillary won by almost 3 million votes, but lost at the electoral college by 77 (Trump 304 and Clinton 227). Trump managed to prevail by 0.25%–a quarter of a point–in some key states, such as Ohio and Florida, and that was enough for him to obtain a decisive victory.

On 5 electoral occasions, the republic has prevailed before democracy or majority rule: 1824, 1876, 1888, 2000 and 2016. In all cases, the Democratic Party candidate has been defeated, although reluctantly accepting his or her bad luck. Today the reviled Andrew Jackson, immensely popular in his time (the first third of the 19th century), tried to change the electoral rules, but could not. No one could.
The consequence is that the campaign intensifies in those 12 key states and decreases substantially in the red (Republican) or the blue (Democrat) states. At least for some time California will be Democrat and Texas Republican. Trying to get a few expensive votes is not worth it when the “prize” is elsewhere.

That’s why (and because of the sun, golf, and Mar-a-Lago) Donald Trump has officially moved from New York to Florida. But, also because of that, Joe Biden is making a great effort to defeat Trump in a state that has 29 electoral votes, the fourth in the nation in number of inhabitants, although it probably exceeds New York if the census, currently in process, reflects an increase,
as predicted.

How do you win in Florida? Roughly, the southern part of the state, the most cosmopolitan and educated, is Democrat. The north, more rural and less educated, is Republican. And the center
changes with the influence of the million Puerto Ricans, almost all educated, who have arrived in recent years and who mostly vote Democrat.

Within the political tradition of the United States, those voters’ preferences are taken into account by the Democratic and Republican parties. The conquest of the Jewish vote requires a position favorable to Israel. Winning the black vote requires the same in Africa, as Washington’s position during the apartheid underlined. And Cubans and Venezuelans in Miami expect a strong position against the dictatorships that have ruined them and sent them into exile.

Meanwhile, the Puerto Ricans settled in Orlando expect from their fellow citizens–they are Americans “by birth” since 1917–a much more generous position towards Puerto Rico and, for the most part, that they allow the Island to become a state, as Congress did with Alaska or Hawaii in 1959, two other territories separated from the mainland.

It is within this spirit that the Venezuelan internationalist lawyer Joaquín Chaffardet has prepared something that could have been called “In his own words.” These are 19 writings by Joe Biden, from talks to twits, or about him, which show that Biden has been demanding democracy forVenezuelans for many years and calling the regime an atrocious dictatorship.

The writings convinced me. Venezuelans should not expect from Biden anything similar to what Obama did in Cuba. A victim of his naiveté, President Obama ended the policy maintained by eleven presidents before him, Republicans and Democrats, consisting of not making too many concessions to the Communist regime in Havana, unless the impoverished Island stopped exporting its nefarious revolution.

Among the virtual papers that Chaffardet sends there is an excellent article by Andrés Oppenheimer that says, verbatim, “The leaders of the Democratic Party are strongly supporting the decision of President [Trump] to overthrow the illegitimate ruler of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro.” Biden’s hand can be seen there. Excellent!

One Response to “Biden, Trump and the 2020 elections”

  1. Manuel 8 July 2020 at 11:15 am Permalink

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    The justices upheld regulations from the Trump administration that allowed employers with religious objections to decline to provide contraception coverage


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