After months of a large, diverse Democratic candidate race, the contest has finally narrowed down to two real contestants (Tulsi Gabbard is just a space-filler who should drop out of the race), former Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.
But when I say “two contestants,” I really mean one contestant: Joe Biden. Biden would be by far the best choice for Americans as they head to the polls, especially if we want to stabilize our current volatile political predicament and ensure that President Donald Trump doesn’t get reelected.
Let’s first take a look at Biden’s backstory to get a better sense of all he has achieved—and what he still can—and will.
Before devoting himself to a lifelong career in politics, Biden practiced attended Syracuse to study law, where he gained a substantial understanding of the legal system and the Constitution. In 1972, he was elected to the United States Senate, where he would remain for 40 years.
While in the Senate, Biden played a monumental role in getting key, effective legislation passed and was a staunch advocate of campaign finance reform, nuclear arms control, climate change treaties, protection for women against violence, among many other pressing issues. Biden helped create the SALT II Treaty, the Global Climate Protection Act, the Violence Against Women Act, the Brady background check bill, the Recovery Act, the Affordable Care Act…need I say more?
Biden was the former Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Chairman of the International Narcotics Control Caucus, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Vice President of the U.S., the list goes on. So, you could say that his extensive political background renders him an extremely qualified candidate for the presidency. The knowledge he gained from these various positions, especially as vice president, is invaluable, and proves that he has the best experience and qualifications to be president.
During his vice presidency, Biden played a major role in the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan in 2014, oftentimes advising Obama on foreign policy. He also pressured Obama to enact banking reforms and was instrumental in the ratification of gun control bills.
At this point, it may be necessary to apologize. I realize now that I have been rambling about Biden’s outstanding accomplishments, his potential, his pragmatic yet revolutionary policies…there I go again. Now is as good a time as any to address the other candidate. Here we go. Brace yourself.
Bernie Sanders started his career as mayor of the vitally important town of Burlington, Vt. (in case you couldn’t tell, I am being sarcastic. Who cares about Burlington, Vt.? His mayorship doesn’t hold a flame to Biden’s role as vice president of the U.S.). He then proceeded to become a member of the US House of Representatives, where he served for 16 years. After accomplishing absolutely nothing (unless you consider agitating classist grievances and conflicts that reflected Karl Marx’s calls for a proletariat revolution as an accomplishment) in the House, Sanders moved on to the Senate, where he has lurked in the background ever since.
And while Biden has helped pass effective and successful gun reform, Sanders has paved the way for firearms to remain on the streets, vetoing bills that established background checks and voicing his assent for bills that protected gun producers.
The only notable thing about Sanders is his ability to breed radicalism and create searing divisions within the Democratic Party and the United States as a whole. He has been ineffective, unproductive, and frankly, irrelevant during his tenure. According to Politico, Sanders had “big ideas but little impact on Capitol Hill,” noting how he has larger-than-life ideas, especially in regards to financial reform, but how he hasn’t really done anything to address this except for the “Audit the Fed” bill.
Plus, he’s not even a Democrat! Sure, he may be a self-described “Democratic Socialist,” but that doesn’t mean he is a Democrat. He is an independent running in the Democratic race. And, what is “Democratic Socialism,” you may ask? To be brutally honest, it’s just a euphemism for communism.
His radical ideology and agenda will only exacerbate the divisions we currently see plaguing our country. The partisanship in our country is at an all-time high, with an ultra-conservative wing uniting behind Trump and an ultra-liberal wing coalescing behind Sanders. If the election were between Trump and Sanders, the vast majority of Americans who consider themselves more moderate would be caught between two extremists. Many moderate Republicans and Independents would fear voting for a socialist, so they would instead vote for Trump, strengthening Trump’s chances of winning the election.
One thing most Americans can agree on is that Trump is bad news. His tyrannical personality and policies have already threatened our democracy, and if he is reelected, we might not even have a democracy anymore. Which brings me back to why Biden is the best candidate for the presidency. If Sanders is the Democratic nominee, he cannot win. His radical, divisive ideology cannot unite such a broad coalition of Americans to defeat Trump.
But Biden can. His pragmatic, centrist policies will exert a moderating influence on our volatile political climate and will benefit all people, regardless of class, gender, political affiliation, religion, etc. His vast knowledge and unparalleled qualifications reinforce his credibility and potential to lead a country of almost 330 million people.
So, the next time you hear somebody say “Feel the Bern,” take it as a warning sign of what could be if Sanders wins the nomination. If he gets chosen as the Democratic nominee, you will be “feeling the Bern,” as our country will go up in flames.