Biden vs. Trump: Everything You Need To Know About the Presidential Candidates

Julia Barton ® Staff Writer |

The 2020 election is one week away and Minnesota State University, Mankato students are voicing opinions about the importance of voting. 

Signs around campus from the 2020 inSider Newsletter, the campus’s weekly newsletter to engage students, election polls had shown that just 50% of 18-24 year olds in Minnesota voted in 2016. This year, 81.4% of Mavericks say they will vote.

“I have already voted by mail since I am from out of state. I think it is very important to vote this year especially just because of all the chaos that has been 2020, this is a time for change that we need now more than ever,” Abby Alderman, freshman at MNSU said.

Also stated in the poll is that 71.7% of students surveyed said the election will have a direct impact on their lives.

“I think voting is important because your vote matters and counts and will make an impact. If you can vote I think you should vote because it directly affects your life for the next four years,” Mallory Schafer, freshman at MNSU said.

This year’s election has seen a huge increase in voting by mail due to the COVID-19 pandemic, although most states are allowing voters to vote early and in person on Nov. 3, 2020. 

“Yes, I think it’s important to vote because it’s your right as a citizen and your duty to voice your beliefs, although sometimes the majority vote doesn’t count I still think it is important,” MNSU freshman Andrew Zoubek said.

Voicing their opinions about this year’s election, the majority of MNSU students are predicted to vote this year if they haven’t already.

A Break Down of the Presidential Candidates’ Differing Policies

Former Vice President Joe Biden is the Democratic candidate. Biden’s Vice President selection is Kamala Harris, who served as the Attorney General for California.

President Donald Trump is seeking a second term. His vice president is former congressman Mike Pence.


Biden: Biden proposes forgiving student debt for poorer grads. If elected, his plan is to immediately cancel a minimum of $10,000 of student debt per person that was originally brought up by Sen. Elizabeth Warren. This would be funded by repealing the high-income “excess business loan” tax cut in the CARES Act. He also proposes making public college tuition-free for families earning $125,000 or less.

Trump: Trump proposes to eliminate the Public Service Loan Forgiveness and subsidized loans programs. His proposal requests a 7.8% decrease in funds for the Department of Education compared to the budget of 2020. He also wants to decrease the number of years undergraduate students have to pay off their loans by five years. Congress dismissed his proposal in the past few years. Trump also proposes setting limits on parent PLUS and grad PLUS loans.


Biden: Biden wants to create millions of middle class jobs through his infrastructure plan. This involves building renewable energy infrastructure, anchor institutions and climate resiliency industries. Biden proposes raising the federal minimum wage to $15.

Trump: Trump wants to create jobs through infrastructure investments as well as continue his plan to the “Buy American, Hire American” immigration agenda. The U.S. economy created 6.6 million jobs during the first three years after Trump took office. Trump also wants to leave federal minimum wage rates up to the states.


Biden: Biden would raise the top income tax rate back to 39.6% from 37% and the top corporate income tax rate to 28% from 21%. If elected, he will apply Social Security taxes to those earnings above $400,000, tax capital gains and dividends at ordinary rates for those with annual incomes of more than $1 million and impose a 15% minimum tax on book income of large companies.

Trump: Trump’s plan for top earners is to extend the provisions under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Actaof 2017 beyond their scheduled expiration, maintaining the top tax rate at 37% and the 20% deduction for pass-through owners. 


Biden: Biden would rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement. His plans will require federal spending of $2 trillion over his first term and aims achieve a 100% clean energy economy with net-zero emissions no later than 2050.

Trump: Trump is a strong supporter of the fossil fuel industry. While in office, he has pulled America out of the Paris Climate Agreement due to his belief that the deal’s terms are  unfair to American workers.


Biden: Instead of Medicare for All, Biden wants to create a public health insurance option and lower the eligibility age for Medicare from 65 to 60.

Trump: In the 2021 budget proposal, the Trump administration proposes spending cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. His agenda, however, is to end surprise billing as well as try to bring down drug prices.

Header photos by Carolyn Kaster and Evan Vucci/AP Photo.

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