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Will Donald Trump or Joe Biden be better for race relations?
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Joe Biden has proposed reforms that will reduce racial inequalities and discrimination

Joe Biden has pledged to invest in minority communities and businesses, and will introduce measures that will improve the economic status of low-income Americans. Biden's criminal justice and immigration proposals will also address the root causes of racial inequalities.

The Argument

Joe Biden has outlined a range of policy proposals that will address racial inequalities and discrimination. The economic plans include a $150 billion capital investment programme that will focus on small businesses and business-owners that have been excluded previously. Biden will also expand the New Markets Tax Credit to $5 billion a year and will make it permanent; this would provide tax incentives to invest in disadvantaged communities.[1] Biden also plans to introduce a new First Down Payment Tax Credit which will help lower income families own a home and will build 1.5 million homes to address the affordable housing crisis. He also wants to make public colleges and universities free for students from families with incomes below $125,000 - this will benefit 91% of Black households, 88% of Latino households and 91% of Native American households.[1] Biden will also raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour and will eliminate the minimum tipped wage, which will benefit people of colour who make up the majority of those earning under $15 an hour.[1] Biden also plans immigration and criminal justice reform. He will offer approximately 11 million people in the US illegally a path to citizenship and will take in more refugees.[2] He has also called for an end to cash bail, the death penalty and private prisons. Biden supports the decriminalisation of marijuana, a move which would disproportionately benefit communities of colour, who are more likely to be arrested for possession.[3] Under Biden, the Justice Department would prioritise hate crimes, which have increased in frequency under Trump[4] and the Federal Reserve would monitor and report on economic inequality data.[5] These policies would significantly improve the social and economic status of minority groups in America, and would empower groups targeted and marginalised during Trump’s presidency. They address some root causes of racial tension, and would help to heal race relations.

Counter arguments

Biden’s track record on race issues suggests he makes appealing commitments and uses the rhetoric of improving race relations, but the reality of his past actions do not match up to this. He has made insensitive remarks and must take some responsibility for current issues since he recently served as vice president for eight years. Trump has also made a series of wide-ranging policy proposals to improve the social and economic position of communities of colour, and so Biden’s policies are not reason enough to hold that he will be better for race relations than Trump.



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Friday, 16 Oct 2020 at 08:50 UTC

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