President Donald Trump and Democratic Candidate Joe Biden Continue to Battle Before Election Day

Lydia McFarlane Staff Writer

Amid racial tensions, coronavirus fear and overall division in America, an election is underway. Election Day is just over a month away, and it seems as if the United States, as well as the world, is holding its breath watching this unfold. The election between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden has become heated as Americans side with either candidate. U.S. citizens have strong opinions, whether positive or negative, about both candidates.

Several factors, such as the coronavirus response, reaction to tense race relations, as well as the overall demeanor of each candidate, are going to be important as Americans likely choose one of the two as the next president of the United States. As a result, eyes are on the United States as citizens approach Election Day. 

President Trump is running with the same slogan from last election, “Make America Great Again,” while former Vice President Biden is campaigning with the slogan, “Build Back Better.” 

As the Republican candidate, Trump’s platform is much more conservative compared to Biden’s more moderate views and campaign platform. President Trump has been holding rallies on his campaign trail, even through the pandemic, which his supporters have been flocking to in droves. Many of the President’s rallies have been cause for coronavirus concern and have drawn criticism. 

Joe Biden is also campaigning; however, he has limited attendance due to his concerns over the virus. He has been hosting several town halls and has also been frequenting his hometown of Scranton. 

The two have been approaching their campaign strategies in vastly different ways, in order to gain support and encourage their already loyal supporters. 

So far, Biden has been ahead in many national polls. According to CNN, Trump is trailing Biden by only seven percent as of Sept. 23. Biden is at an average of 51%, while Trump is close behind with an average of 44%. However, many voters are wary of trusting these polls. 

Michael Helbing of Olyphant, PA said, “Polls are just an estimate. They can be off, and people’s opinions can change before the election comes around.” 

Like many other voters, he is not fully trusting the polls to give him the answer for what will happen on Nov. 3.

During this election, many voters are also struggling with the decision of whether to vote in person or with mail-in ballots. Amidst the pandemic and a very important election, voters are deciding whether to vote in-person and risk potential exposure to the coronavirus, or vote by mail and risk their votes not counting due to mail-in voting difficulties. 

Kate Gibbons of Exeter, PA and Pamela Fendrock of Kingston, PA are voters currently grappling with their decision regarding which way they will vote in November. In Pennsylvania, the guidelines for mail-in voting are very strict. Fendrock says trying to get a mail-in ballot from her local election office has been a hassle. Gibbons says of mail-in voting in Pennsylvania, “Pennsylvania hasn’t had the mail-in option before like many other states have. Every county is currently struggling to catch up.”

Helbing is pretty set in his decision to vote by a mail-in ballot. “I am definitely concerned about my vote not counting, and I wish there was a silver bullet,” he said. “There is a risk of my ballot not counting, but it’s about trying to find the least risky way. We should not have to be grappling with these concerns. It is so wrong.” 

The United States has been held in the grasps of racial unrest and a global pandemic for months now. As a result, this election is shaping up to be one of the most important and controversial ones in American history.