The 2020 presidential election is a critical juncture in history, with implications not just for the future of democracy in America, but for the world. With this knowledge in mind, The Shorthorn endorses Joe Biden for president.
We opted not to endorse a candidate in 2016. Given the state of the nation, we no longer feel we can be silent on the matter.
We have come to this conclusion based on a range of considerations, but most pressingly, we are shocked and unsettled by the anti-democratic precedent the president has established by not committing to a peaceful transition of power should he lose in November.
President Donald Trump has said dangerous things before. He was dangerous when he neglected to verbally denounce white supremacy and told the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by.” He was dangerous every time he downplayed the severity of the coronavirus and denied his role in its spread.
But the president has eroded the very foundation of democracy by justifying a refusal to relinquish power with repeated and unfounded claims of rampant voter fraud. He has established a presidency that does not respect the due process of the American election, and that alone should disturb anyone.
If that were not enough, in his four years in the nation’s most powerful office, President Trump has:
- demonstrated a continual disregard for the environment by rolling back Obama-era protection regulations
- threatened the validity and livelihood of beneficiaries of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program
- repeatedly refused to release his tax returns, and a New York Times investigation revealed he has paid no income taxes at all in 10 of the previous 15 years
- halted funding to the United Nations Population Fund, which supports reproductive and sexual health programs for vulnerable women in over 150 countries
- claimed very publicly and without any evidence that President Barack Obama had wiretapped Trump Tower prior to his 2016 election
- cut a $200M pandemic early warning program just months before the coronavirus began spreading through China
Given the trajectory of this presidency, we cannot in good conscience recommend another four years of President Trump.
The Shorthorn Editorial Board is made up of opinion editor Spencer Brewer; Editor-in-Chief Shay Cohen; news editor Angelica Perez; Cecilia Lenzen, life and entertainment editor; sports editor Chris Amaya; David Silva Ramirez, life and entertainment reporter; and copy editor Andrew Walter. Cohen and Ramirez were not present for this editorial decision, and multimedia editor Elias Valverde II and news reporter Daisy Garcia filled in.