FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 29, 2020
35 DAYS OUT: Joe’s Bold Vision for the Future of this Country Will Take Center Stage at Debate
During tonight’s presidential debate Virginians will see on full display the most pressing issues facing voters across the Commonwealth. While President Trump still has no plan to contain COVID-19 and help our communities recover from this crisis, Joe Biden has a plan to lead this country through economic recovery and help our communities build back better than they were before. And while President Trump has launched an all-out assault on health care, Joe Biden will protect Virginians’ access to health care and expand opportunities for Virginians of all backgrounds.
Below are the Biden-Harris plans for some of the most important issues facing Virginians:
- Trump is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to tear down the Affordable Care Act. If he is successful,
- Millions of Americans rely on the ACA for coverage and the pandemic has only made that reliance more pronounced. The Biden-Harris plan protects the Affordable Care Act and builds on it by providing a new insurance option – a public option and lowering premiums and other health costs like prescription drugs. It also protects Medicaid and Medicare from attacks and doubles funding for community health centers on the frontlines of care.
More on the Biden-Harris plan for health care can be found here.
- Because President Trump lied about the virus and failed to get the pandemic under control, nearly 150,000 Virginians have tested positive for COVID-19 and more than 3,100 have died.
- Communities of color in Virginia have been disproportionately impacted, with Latinos making up 30% of the cases and just 10% of the population, and Black Virginians making up 25% of the cases while just 20% of the population.
- Joe Biden knows how to mount an effective crisis response and elevate the voices of scientists, public health experts, and first responders because he has done it before when he helped manage our nation’s response to the Ebola crisis.
- He will get the virus under control by making sure every single person in this country gets free testing and treatment for the coronavirus, ensuring the development and distribution of a safe and effective vaccine and other supplies like personal protective equipment, and being honest with the American people, as he has since the beginning, about what is necessary to overcome this challenge.
More on the Biden-Harris plan to battle COVID-19 can be found here.
- Trump’s handling of the economy during the pandemic has been a disaster for Virginians.
- As of August, the number of small businesses open in Virginia had decreased by 16% and small business revenue is down 22% since January 2020 overall.
- There are still 267,000 Virginians unemployed, more than 120,000 than were unemployed in March 2020.
- Even before the pandemic began, Trump was not helping Virginia’s economy
- Trump called for a boycott of Goodyear – which employs over 2,000 people in Virginia – for petty personal reasons.
- Trump started a reckless trade war with China that pushed manufacturing into recession in 2019 and hurt Virginia businesses – and then lobbied for big banks, instead of fighting for American jobs.
- Joe Biden knows that without a cohesive plan to stop COVID-19, the economy can never recover, so a national response to the pandemic is integral to any economic plan moving forward.
- The Biden-Harris Build Back Better plan will make sure Virginia communities can recover stronger than before the pandemic. It will create millions of good-paying jobs with a choice to join a union while revitalizing American manufacturing, building sustainable infrastructure and a clean energy future, and caring for our children, aging relatives, and people with disabilities. And it will provide small businesses the relief they need, while also leveraging $150 in new capital and opportunity for small businesses that have been structurally excluded for generations.
- The Biden-Harris plan will advance racial equity in Virginia and every corner of the country, as we’ve seen how the burden of the pandemic and essential work rests disproportionately on people of color.
More on the Build Back Better plan can be found here.
- Trump’s climate change denial puts Virginians at risk.
- Virginia is particularly vulnerable to the rising sea levels and intensifying hurricanes and rainfall rates that climate change is likely to cause. In fact, according to the Georgetown Climate Center, Hampton Roads is the second most vulnerable area in the country, after only New Orleans.
- Joe Biden and Kamala Harris know the climate crisis is an existential threat, and we’ve lost critical ground these last four years.
- In the first 100 Days, Biden will send Congress a sweeping plan to power our economic recovery and create millions of good paying jobs with a chance to join a union, including by investing $2 trillion in sustainable infrastructure and clean energy over 4 years.
- His plan will set us on an irreversible course to meet the urgent and ambitious climate progress that science demands and help ensure the U.S. achieves a 100% clean energy economy and net-zero emissions no later than 2050.
- It will make historic investments in research and innovation and build a more resilient infrastructure, more efficient power grid, and 500,000 public charging stations for electric cars.
- And, Biden will immediately rejoin the Paris Accord, and rally other countries to join us in increasing the ambition of our climate commitments.
More on the Biden-Harris climate plan can be found here.
RACIAL ECONOMIC EQUITY
- President Trump does not recognize the dignity of people of color and his failures to address the pandemic have disproportionately hurt them in Virginia.
- Black unemployment in Virginia hit 11.1% at the height of the pandemic
- Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will tackle systemic racism across all of our laws, institutions, and policies – including ensuring that communities of color are able to build wealth and take advantage of economic opportunities in our recovery.
- Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will make historic investments in minority and women-owned small businesses, to help communities recover and build back better. A Biden-Harris administration will expand access to $150 billion in capital to minority owned businesses and tackle discrimination in the financial sector that have contributed to inequities in small business ownership, growth, and success.
- They will also triple Title I funding to close the gap between white and non-white schools, invest more than $70 billion in Historically Black Colleges and Universities and other Minority Serving Institutions, and provide student debt relief.
- Joe and Kamala will address racial disparities in homeownership, including by creating a $15,000 tax credit for buyers to purchase their first home, rollback Trump’s rollbacks of civil rights protections, and end redlining and other discriminatory practices in the housing market.
- Joe and Kamala will fight to end the deadly health inequities that COVID-19 has amplified, and have laid out key steps to tackle systemic racism in our criminal justice system.
The Biden-Harris plans on justice and economic equity are available on the campaign website.
- In Virginia, gun related incidents are the second most frequent cause of unnatural deaths, followed only by drug overdoses, and firearms are the leading cause of death among children and teens in Virginia.
- In 2017 alone, 231 Virginia veterans died by suicide — accounting for 21% of all Virginia suicides.
- A Biden-Harris administration will confront gun violence as a public health epidemic. Thoughts and prayers won’t fix broken laws, and it takes courage and commitment to stand up to the NRA.
- Joe and Kamala will ban assault weapons and high capacity magazines, require background checks for all gun sales, close dangerous gun sales loopholes – including to keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers, and tackle gun violence by investing in evidence-based community interventions.
- This also means treating the trauma that often outlasts shootings, including by doubling the number of mental health professionals in schools.
The Biden-Harris plan on gun safety can be found here.
More information on the Biden-Harris platform can be found here.