2020 United States Presidential Candidate Profiles

Written by Matthew Goldsmith, News Editor

President Donald Trump poses for his official portrait at The White House, in Washington, D.C., on Friday, October 6, 2017. Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead.

Donald Trump

 Donald Trump is the 45th president of the United States. He is seeking re-election as the Republican candidate for office.

  In 2016, Trump won the election against Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton to be elected president. 

  He became the first president in history with no previous political or military experience. Before entering into politics, Trump was a businessman who led The Trump Organization. He was also a television personality who hosted “The Apprentice” on NBC from 2003-2015.

  Trump has been a polarizing figure since his 2016 campaign. He is known for being more boisterous and less filtered than most politicians.

  President Trump is against defunding the police and is in favor of the second amendment and private prisons.

  Trump has received criticism for his actions on climate change, which include pulling out of the Paris Climate Accord and rollback of Obama-era climate regulations. 

  The president has focused on a law and order approach during the 2020 campaign in response to this summer’s social unrest. 

  “Left-wing mobs have torn down statues of our founders, desecrated our memorials and carried out a campaign of violence and anarchy,” Trump said during a September 2020 speech.

  Trump has commended the work he and his administration have done during COVID-19, in particular banning travel from China in late January. He recently gave himself an “A+” for his handling of the pandemic.

  “We’ve done a phenomenal job, not just a good job, a phenomenal job,” Trump said.


Official portrait of former Vice President Joe Biden at the White House, Jan. 10, 2013. Official White House photo by David Lienemann

Joe Biden

  Joe Biden is the current Democratic candidate for president. He previously served as Vice President from 2009-2017 and was a senator from Delaware from 1973-2009. 

  If elected, Biden would be the oldest inaugurated president in American history, as he would be 78 on Inauguration Day. Currently, the oldest inaugurated president is his opponent Donald Trump, who was 70 when inaugurated in 2017.

  The former vice president made history in 1973 when he was elected as a senator at age 30, becoming the sixth-youngest senator in American history.

  Biden has received criticism for his vote in favor of invading Iraq in 2002 when he was a senator. Biden, whose son, Beau, served in Iraq, has since admitted his vote was a mistake.

  Biden has run for president twice before in 1988 and 2008. His 1988 campaign was derailed when he admitted to plagiarizing a speech, nearly verbatim, from a British politician. 

  The former vice president has called for healing and unity amid social unrest. Shortly after the death of George Floyd, he released a video addressing the “national crisis” of police brutality and the history of racism in the United States.

  “The original sin of the country still stains our nation today,” Biden said. “We need justice for George Floyd.”

  Biden has been very critical of Trump’s handling of COVID-19, saying he downplayed the impact of the virus.

  “The virus was too big for him,” Biden said.

  The Democratic candidate has said he will listen to scientists and, if elected president, will shut down the economy again if that is what scientists advise.