Even with many criticisms against Trump many Americans voted for him. These votes are largely for Trump. This is also the problem the Republican Party is facing. Some Republican leaders may have learned that Trump lost the elections but can’t speak out because they do not want to lose Trump’s base (the core demographic group that voted for him and follows Trump). The question is, how did the Republican base become Trump’s base? And how did he manage to turn the Republican base into his own? This needs more investigation.
The main ideological difference between Democrats and Republicans is like the old UNP and SLFP, but specific to the USA. Generally, the Republicans favor big companies and the Democrats are for ordinary people, including unions. For instance, when the economy is bad, the Republican solution is to support capital so that they can provide opportunities for the citizens; this is called trickledown economics. The Democratic solution is to take care of the people who are affected by it; this is commonly called the welfare approach. However, those who vote for these parties have a lot of different views and reasons. Some vote against the Democrats because they support abortion; some vote for the Democrats because they support the women’s right to choose.
The manner Trump handles COVID-19 the main reason for his defeat and that is what made some people to crossover. The USA is highly divided these days. The Trump base was so attracted to him. Based on surveys, the analysts think the in-between people who voted for Biden were largely affected by Trump ignoring COVID. Now the death rate has really spiked, and it is hard to hide.
Media says, during Trump’s period, USA more divided, this means the supporters of both parties were highly unlikely to listen to the logic of the opponents. They even watch different tv channels. As Trump made the media look like fake, his base gradually got glued to the Fox channel. So, they would never know, for example, that COVID kills. I heard a nurse saying on NPR (public radio) that every day a few patients say that they never knew COVID is this bad.
Many says that under Trump’s administration, American economy is growing as he paid more attention to national economy. But this is not true. Economy and the political system are semi-independent of each other, at least in the USA. the economic upturn that was in flow during Obama administration continued into Trumps. So, the first couple of years of Trump’s term was good. Then it got hit, largely because of his administration’s policies. Biden will inherit that and will continue for some time. Now a lot unemployed.
There will be some difference in international politics of US government under Biden, mainly in Middle East and Asian regions. But may not be a lot, because Biden will be a diplomat and the values are somewhat different. He will work more closely with Europe (even Johnson of the UK has already congratulated Biden). He will try to pull out the forces from places like Afghanistan and will try to come to a new agreement with Iran. But will continue some of what Trump began as such acts have changed the context, that is the point of departure. For example, he may hold onto some of the tariffs imposed on China.
Dr. Nihal Perera is a Sri Lankan living in USA. He is a Professor at Ball State University and former Senior Research Fellow at Asia Research Institute, NUS. He studied Production of Social Space at Binghamton University and Urban Development Planning at University of London