The Shorthorn has officially endorsed Joe Biden for president. While I absolutely believe it is in their right to endorse a candidate for the 2020 election, their editorial fails to remain objective, and several of their arguments are flawed.

Contrary to the title, the editorial was not an endorsement for Biden. Rather, it was a refutation of a second term for President Donald Trump, making almost no mention as to why Biden is a solid candidate. Readers should take this into consideration before casting their ballot.

The first and arguably most notable claim the editorial board makes is that the president set an “anti-democratic precedent” by claiming that he is not committed to a peaceful transition of power if he were to lose in November. What they do not do is provide context to the matter.

Jean Luc Reynolds

Reynolds is an aerospace engineering junior and Community Voices columnist for The Shorthorn.

When asked in the recent debate if he would accept defeat in the election, Trump specifically stated, “I hope it's gonna be a fair election. If it's a fair election, I am 100% on board.” I don’t believe demanding a fair election, with the possibility of rampant voter fraud, is a lack of commitment toward a peaceful transition of power. As a matter of fact, Biden has 600 lawyers on standby with the fear that Trump will steal the election.

It pains me to once again counter the argument that Trump has not denounced white supremacy. Trump has done everything, aside from walking down the street wearing a sandwich board, to denounce white supremacy and hate groups in all forms.

The board boldly stated that the president “demonstrated a continual disregard for the environment,” but ignored the Great American Outdoors Act, and the fact that the International Energy Agency stated that, “The United States saw the largest decline in energy-related CO2 emissions in 2019 on a country basis.” The Shorthorn ignores policy and makes the blanket claim that Trump is “anti-environment.”

Their last point I’d like to address is related to his taxes, where they stated Trump “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.” What they do not tell you is that he utilized the completely legal tax code that was endorsed by left-wing politicians. Trump claimed tax losses from his real estate business to offset income from other sources, a completely legal tactic.

I absolutely agree that it is important for even the president — who is a citizen like you and I — to pay their taxes. Rather than attacking those who followed the system, we should cut the very tax loopholes in question.

According to The Atlantic, there are several possible reasons why the president only paid $750 in taxes during 2016. Either his businesses are doing poorly or he’s made use of legal tax loopholes. The bottom line is that we don’t have sufficient evidence to make any conclusions, but what we do know is that there are loopholes in place that need to be shut down.

So, do they want the best man for the job, or do they simply want Trump out of office? When I diligently searched for their reason as to why Biden was a solid candidate, I came up short. Rather than advocating for Biden’s policies, the editorial made the age-old claim of “orange man bad.” I would like to personally call upon The Shorthorn to reexamine their endorsement of Biden and provide to their readers sufficient justification.

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