In a stars webinar with former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Mona SUTPHEN, we explored how the outcome of the 2020 U.S. presidential election will have an impact around the world. Regardless of who is the next president, Mona identified policy convergence between Trump and Biden in the following areas:
- Trade: Biden wouldn’t be as enamoured with tariffs as Trump, so while the tools may change, the general direction would remain the same.
- US-China relationship: Both old and new economy are in negative posture towards China, and the security establishment and human rights activists are critical of China anyway. Tensions could arguably get even worse with Biden.
- Industrial heartland: Both Trump and Biden would focus on growing the economy, e.g. their approach to traditional energy would not be that divergent.
- Immigration: The stark edges of what Trump did would fall by the wayside under Biden, but there wouldn’t be a significant difference in the approach towards Immigration.
- Healthcare infrastructure: There is strong bipartisan support to invest in healthcare infrastructure, PPE production, the pharmaceutical and food supply chain.
In contrast, if Biden is elected, we should expect to see really stark changes in the following areas:
- Climate change: A rapid shift into Paris or Paris+, policies encouraging renewables, bans on drilling on federal lands and a massive push on the regulatory front on emissions.
- Healthcare: As a result of the pandemic, there is less employer-based health insurance and more and more people will move to the exchanges that Obama set up and Biden would make it easier to get on these exchanges.
- Fiscal policy: While Trump would be focused on a mix of infrastructure spending and stimulus in form of tax cuts, Biden would be more inclined to raise taxes to pay for some of the bigger infrastructure ideas.
Mona further argued that since George H.W. Bush, Biden would be the most European-oriented president in recent memory. He may not prioritise the Middle East as much as previous administrations have and that would free up some time to focus on Europe and Asia.
Among several other topics, she also talked about the unsentimental and mathematically driven choice Biden has to make to identify a suitable running mate – and she explained what plaid pants and polka dot socks have to do with the Vice Presidential vetting process.
To watch the recording of the stars webinar, please click here.