The voter’s guide to the 2020 election

Alissa Chang, Leopard Life Co Editor

With 11 Democrats and three Republicans in the running for this year’s presidential election, it can be difficult to know who’s who and what they stand for. Still, it’s crucial to vote and participate in the election, especially for young adults who are the future of our society.

“It’s important for people to vote because you can not complain about how our government runs unless you actually have a say in the government. And when I say that, I want you to be educated voters,” said Angie Carraway, US history teacher.


Republican Candidates


Texas is a mostly Republican state, and there are two Republicans running for president. The candidate running against President Trump probably won’t be nominated by their party, though, because Trump was already elected to office once.

“We’re assuming that Trump will be the official Republican candidate, but that’s also not been confirmed by the Republican Party,” said Carraway.

President Trump is running again for his second term.  However, in nearly every poll of how well President Trump is doing his job, from sources like the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, and Economist, disapproval ratings were as much as 20 percent higher than approval ratings. In fact, his approval ratings in Texas have decreased by 20 percent since taking office.

According to his campaign website, he aims to, “lower taxes, repeal and replace Obamacare, end stifling regulations, protect our borders, keep jobs in our country, take care of our veterans, strengthen our military and law enforcement, and renegotiate bad trade deals, creating a government of, by and for the people.” 

The other candidate is former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld. His policies focus on taking on issues with a realistic approach. He takes on a different view from Trump and supports more work visas for immigrants, joining the Paris Accord, which addresses climate change, and greater involvement in foreign affairs. Still, only one delegate has pledged to nominate him so far.

“I’m an old-fashioned Republican – I believe in a well-run economy, a pragmatic foreign policy, and moderation on social issues,” said Weld. 


Democrat Candidates


A whopping 11 Democrat candidates are running for president this election year with some of the major issues tackled being Medicare for all, greater opportunities of education, immigration, and policies concerning the working class of America. The three candidates with the highest ratings are former Vice President Joe Biden, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, former mayor Michael Bloomberg, and U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

“I think the Democratic Party is still kind of going back and forth on who they’re going to endorse to be the running mate,” said Carraway.

Joe Biden served as the vice president to former President Obama and is now running for president. He aims to strengthen the middle class, build better relations with other countries and world powers, and give each person equal opportunities. Biden also has the highest polling average at 28 percent, however, he still has not been pledged support by any delegates.

In response to candidate Pete Buttigieg, Biden tweeted, “Was it a failure when I helped pass Obamacare, the Paris Agreement, the Violence Against Women Act, or the assault weapons ban? I have a stronger record of passing big, progressive legislation than anyone running.” 

Another candidate is Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders who also ran in the 2016 election. He also has a high polling average of 24 percent, and a staggering 48 percent among Gen Z voters. Sanders scores the highest among many other demographics as well, including Millennial voters, Hispanic voters, Asian-American voters, liberal voters, and male voters. His main policies address Medicare for all, the Green New Deal, and making college more affordable. So far, 11 delegates have already pledged support for him. However, some have their doubts because he is already 78 and may not be entirely fit to serve.

“I’m running for president so that, when we are in the White House, the movement we build together can achieve economic, racial, social and environmental justice for all,” said Sanders.

Former mayor of New York City and billionaire Michael Bloomberg is also running. Some of his policies focus on climate change, gun safety, affordable healthcare, and higher minimum wages. According to his campaign website, he was able to create thousands of jobs, expand health care coverage, and help reduce carbon footprints during his three terms as the New York mayor. He rates third at 14 percent, but, like Biden, delegates have yet to pledge their support to him.

“…make sure that you’re looking at the candidates. Do they align with what you think should be happening in the United States?” said Carraway.