The Wind of Change in US Politics

The Wind of Change in US Politics

The fight is between elephants and donkeys. It is said about the election of the President of the United States. On November 5, 2024, as always, the Republican and Democratic parties are going to participate in the election battle with the two symbols of the elephant and the donkey. However, speculations, calculations and table-negotiations have already started with the election.

Current President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump are ahead as candidates from the two parties, Democrats and Republicans. One of the oldest presidents in US history. The other is the country's first former president to stand trial on criminal charges.

81-year-old Biden's political age is not too young. He has been in the field of politics for more than 50 years. On the other hand, Trump is relatively new to this game. The billionaire and television star became the President of the United States overnight after defeating Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election. He was the first US president who had no prior political or military experience.

Earlier, Biden-Trump faced each other in the 2020 election. Trump had a scandal after he lost the election. On January 6, 2021, he rioted in the US Congress building to change the election results. Accused in this incident, he has to rush to the court. He has to face four cases before the election.

Allan Litman, professor of history at the American University of Washington, considers the next election to be the most surprising election he has ever seen for these reasons. Recently, he told the British newspaper Guardian, "We have not seen such an election before who is accused of a major crime against someone who can be a candidate from a big party." And it is not a crime like ordinary theft. He (Trump) wanted to destroy our democracy.

But regardless of the allegations, Trump continues to comment on the election at his characteristic pace. He called the November 5 election the 'last war'. Trying to take political advantage out of criminal charges. Democrats are conspiring to keep him away from the election. Addressing the countrymen, he says, "In the end, they are not coming to hunt me, they are coming to hunt you." Even Trump's face, taken after his arrest on charges of interference in the 2020 election, is printed on T-shirts and sold.

Trump's tactics are working. At the beginning of this month, an opinion poll was conducted by the American media, the Wall Street Journal. It showed that 47 percent of the voters participating in the survey support Trump. 43 percent support Biden. And if a possible third party and independent candidates are taken into account in the survey, Trump's popularity is even higher. In that case, the figure of support for Trump and Biden is 37 and 31 percent, respectively.

The poll results may come as a surprise to Democrats. Because, Biden supporters say, the current president has done enough for the people of the United States in the last three years. According to them, Biden has created 14 million jobs. Inflation, which was 9 percent in June 2022, came down to 3.2 percent last October. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth has strengthened. Apart from this, Biden has led the Western countries standing by Ukraine to stop Russia.

The survey results surprised Professor Alan Littman as much as Biden supporters. He told the Guardian, "I've never seen a president with so little support despite doing so much." Biden has achieved more domestically than any US president since the 1960s. He has given extraordinary leadership to pull the economy. Economically, he has done better than Trump. Inflation has also fallen by two-thirds under Biden.

However, Biden's approval rating has declined since the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan in 2021. He is also under pressure from record numbers of immigrants entering the United States through the Mexican border. Recently, another reason why Biden has lost popularity with many people in his country is Israel's attack on Gaza, Palestine. The international community is demanding an immediate ceasefire to stop Israel's attacks there. But Israel is not stopping the attack because the US President did not agree.

According to a Reuters report, Biden has already faced obstacles from Trump's Republican Party in Congress to renew military aid to Ukraine in the war against Russia. And on the Gaza issue, the American people are against the president. In this case, Trump can use an opportunity for the people of the country. That is his 'America First' policy. Americans who fear the United States becoming more involved in the Ukraine or Israel issue may agree with Trump's 'America First' policy.

And despite Biden's success with the economy, a large part of the United States citizens, including many young voters, see the economy differently. They say that the cost of various essential products and services, including groceries, cars and houses, care of children and the elderly, has increased. However, the salary did not increase accordingly. Andra Gillespie, a political science teacher at Emory University in the United States, gave an explanation of why such a complaint. According to him, voters feel that Biden has not fulfilled as much as he promised. So he did a lot of work to fulfill the promise but it did not meet people's expectations.

Biden is now 81

Another issue for Biden is his age. If he is elected president again, he will be 86 years old at the end of his term. Many Democratic members of Congress, like Dane Phillips, want someone from a new generation to take over the leadership. Many Democrats also privately expressed hope that Biden would step down after the midterm elections in 2022 to make room for younger leaders like Kamala Harris, Gavin Newsom, and Gretchen Whitmer. But now it seems that there is no chance.

America's right to abortion is now a big weapon in Biden's hand in the election campaign. Last year, the country's Supreme Court overturned the old law that gave the right to abortion. There was a huge protest about this. While conservatives supported the court's decision, Biden spoke out against it. Recent polls have shown that Americans do not favor stricter abortion rights. In this regard, Biden is ahead of Trump in the Wall Street Journal survey. Therefore, Democrats hope that they can use the abortion issue to gain the support of millions of women and independent voters.

Biden can also benefit from the cases against Trump. If Trump is found guilty in any case during this period, he will still be able to run for office under US law. However, there will be trouble in his candidacy in the election. So before the election, one can expect to see a change in people's attitudes about the economy to Biden's own advantage and Trump's punishment. But he cannot reduce his age.

Democrats have another way to put themselves in a strong position in the next election. That is if Biden removes himself from the race and makes room for others in the party. And in order to do this, Biden will have to make a decision before the election of candidates in the Democratic party from August 19 to 22.

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