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The Case for Biden

The Former Trump Voter

Trump lied about who he was and what he’d do for you.

Illustration by Peter and Maria Hoey for The Boston Globe

In 2016, Donald Trump portrayed himself as a nonpolitician, a successful businessman who had made a multibillion-dollar fortune with no tolerance for Washington’s insider deals. He would drain that swamp, and pick “the best people” to staff his administration. He would bring jobs back to America. He promised to replace the Affordable Care Act with “something terrific” that would save Americans money.

So how have things turned out?

It turns out Trump is not a successful businessman. He lied about being a self-made billionaire. Instead, Trump’s father funneled him more than $400 million through shady tax-avoidance schemes. Despite that largesse, he is awash in debt, to the tune of $421 million. He has aggressively manipulated those losses to reduce or negate his federal income tax payments. For 10 of the 15 years previous to 2016, he paid no federal income tax at all.

Trump didn’t drain the swamp. His administration has been a bonanza for industry insiders and politically connected opportunists. He has hired a staggering number of lobbyists for federal government posts, including a half-dozen in Cabinet-level positions.

Trump’s economy is worse than when he took office. The unemployment rate last month was 8.4 percent, almost twice as high as when he was inaugurated. Under Barack Obama, the joblessness rate fell from 10.6 percent to 7.8 percent in his first term, then, by the end of his second, to 4.7 percent, the rate Trump inherited. Still, manufacturing-sector job losses have continued under Trump.

Trump is stripping Americans of good health care. He never proposed a plan that would make health care better and cheaper. The bill he pushed in 2017 would have cut Medicaid and left 22 million more people without coverage. Although Trump recently declared it was official policy to protect those with preexisting conditions, he has offered no plan to do so. Meanwhile, his administration has joined a lawsuit to invalidate the Affordable Care Act, which would gut that law’s strong protections for those with preexisting conditions. Plus, there would be no expanded Medicaid coverage and no subsidies to help people buy policies on insurance exchanges.

Trump failed to deliver on his promises. If, reassured by his promises, you voted for Trump in 2016 with the hope he could do what more conventional politicians couldn’t or haven’t, it’s time to acknowledge that he hasn’t made good on his word. It’s time to declare our national experiment with Donald Trump a failure — and give Biden a shot. Biden has a better track record on jobs, the economy, and health care. And his proposals have a better chance at helping Americans thrive.