Since the departure of our endorsed Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders from the race, Mass. Peace Action members have expressed a range of views about the presidential race. This is one of a series of opinions written by members on the race as it stands now.
by Carol Coakley
Mass. Peace Action should endorse former Vice-President Joe Biden for President of the United States.
Biden has been in public service for nearly 30 years. This long tenure has provided him with a depth of experience and knowledge that has value in itself, but it also demonstrates his ability to adapt and evolve over time. While we may not agree with some of Biden’s earlier positions, he has come closer to our views over the years.
He will need the support of many different groups and sectors of the population to win this election over the current president who has proved to be surprisingly popular in many quarters.
Biden supports many positions that Mass. Peace Action shares:
Nuclear weapons: He has expressed support for renegotiating the Iran nuclear deal, extending the New START Treaty, and working with China to denuclearize North Korea.
Foreign wars: He wants to end US support for the war on Yemen, bring our troops home from Afghanistan, and turn our focus to combatting Al Qaeda and ISIS. He believes we should elevate the role of diplomacy in our foreign affairs.
Central America: He thinks we should review our Central America commitments and seek to end corruption in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.
Climate: Biden says the US should rejoin the Paris Climate Accord. He would end new oil and gas leases, and offshore drilling. He would tax carbon emissions.
Criminal justice: He is against the death penalty. He wants to end cash bail and eliminate private prisons.
Guns: Biden has advocated for gun control. He will work to ban the manufacture, sale, and importation of assault weapons and institute a buy-back program on military grade weapons.
Education: He is against for-profit charter schools. He would expand student debt relief. He is in favor of boosting teacher pay.
Health care: Biden opposes Medicare for All, but he would expand coverage.
Immigration: He would maintain measures against “illegal entry” but would grant asylum hearings.
Banking: He says he would toughen rules on big banks.
Campaign finance reform: He opposes unlimited spending on campaigns and advocates for campaign finance reform.
Domestic violence: He took a leadership role in helping to pass domestic violence legislation.
He also supports positions with which we disagree. For example:
–He wants to boost defense spending.
–He maintains an iron-clad commitment to Israel.
–He favors developing nuclear technologies to combat climate change.
Though he may not be the candidate of our dreams, Joe Biden could put an end to the nightmare of our current President.
—Carol Coakley is the office manager of Mass. Peace Action and co-chair of its Legislative / Political Committee.