A Look into the Policies of the Leading Democratic Candidates

Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders lead in the polls while the rest of the DNC candidates scramble to pick up enough points to attend the next debate. The top three will finally all share the debate stage for the first time on October 15. Here are the top three issues for each candidate. 

Biden maintains a steady lead, polling at 29% according to Real Clear Politics. As he prepares for the upcoming elections, he has out lined three main policy objectives. First, Biden wants to rebuild the middle class. According to his website, the middles class is more than just a number. It is a set of values including owning a home and sending children off to college. However, as the world changes, many in the middle class get left behind. Biden hopes to change that once elected.

Second, Biden wants the United States to demonstrate leadership on the world stage. With issues like climate change, nuclear weapons, an aggressive China and Russia, millions of refugees, and human rights attacks occurring across the globe, Biden thinks it is time the United States steps up. By strengthening and rebuilding relationships with allies, standing up to “thugs on the global stage,” and using military power responsibly, Biden believes the United States can make a difference.

Lastly, Biden believes that democracy should include everyone. By fixing campaign finance, voting rights and gerrymandering, Americans can rest assured that everyone gets to vote. Biden stresses that everyone, not matter their zip code or the color of their skin, has the right to vote and should be allowed to exercise it. Additionally, by creating a public financing system for federal campaigns, he hopes to make the voices of individual Americans heard.

Warren has recently taken over second place, polling at 21.4%. Her top three policy goals include ending Washington corruption, criminal justice reform, and strengthening democracy of the United States. According to her official website, Warren maintains that the Trump administration is the most corrupt administration of her lifetime. However, Washington corruption encompasses more than just Trump. Companies and wealthy individuals use their money to sway politics in their favor. By requiring all lobbyists to register and banning congressmen from trading stocks while in office, Warren hopes to make a change for the better.

In addition, Warren wants to take in criminal justice reform. In the United States, a black man in more likely to get arrested, charged, and convicted than a white man for the same crime.  If elected, she would work to end racial disparities through sentencing reform. Also, she would ban private prisons and strengthening the code of conduct for judicial nominees.

Much like Biden, Warren wants to protect Americans right to vote and the integrity of elections. She stresses that by overturning every voter suppression law and outlawing gerrymandering Americans will not be restricted from voting. Continuing, she states that the United States must work to end further attacks on democracy by foreign countries. By ensuring that every voice gets heard, through a fair and uncorrupted voting process, Americans will see a government that reflects their beliefs.

Bernie has dropped from second position, and current polls put him at 17.3%. The first issue listed on his website is Medicare for All. According to his website, over 30 million Americans do not have health insurance and medicals bills are the number one cause of bankruptcies. By moving to a single payer system, he maintains it will lower prescription prices and buy prescriptions from Canada for less money.

Second, Bernie wants to launch “the decade of the Green New Deal.” Data shows that the world only has 11 years to move away from fossil fuels to sustainable energy. He lists many objectives of the deal including, reaching 100% renewable energy and transportation by 2030, creating 20 million jobs, a just transition for workers, and declaring a climate national emergency. By likening the deal to Franklin D Roosevelt’s New Deal, Bernie hopes to convince the American people that this is possible too.

Additionally, Bernie wants college for all and to cancel student debt. He points out that the current price of education has skyrocketed over that last thirty years and students have amassed an insurmountable amount of student debt. To fix this, Bernie wants to make colleges, universities, and trade schools free and cancel existing student debt. Not only would this help all college students with debt, but people of color take out loans are a higher rate. By ending student debt, Bernie would help to close the racial wealth debt.

While all the candidates have proposals to make the world a better place, sometimes they have difficulty executing their ideas. The reality remains that many campaign trails’ promises remain unfulfilled. In the coming weeks Biden, Warren, and Bernie’s voting records and history in Washington will be examined more in depth to see if they support or discredit each candidate’s current policy goals. Stay tuned.