Biden and Trump’s Endorsements

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

As election day looms, it is worth looking at the collection of allies and supporters assembled for both campaigns. Both Joe Biden and Donald Trump have managed to largely unify their parties’ lawmakers and traditional allies around their campaigns. 

The Biden campaign’s endorsements reflect the balancing of the two major wings of the Democratic Party and the expansive coalition-building Biden has emphasized. Biden has received endorsements from those firmly in the centrist, moderate wing, such as the conservative Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) and Democratic Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear. 

At the same time, Biden has garnered support from progressive stalwarts including the progressive firebrand Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Mi) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). 

Progressive outside groups have also rallied to support Biden’s campaign. Though many supported other candidates during the Democratic primaries, progressive organizations such as 350 Action have endorsed Biden, while others have rallied to his side even as they hold off on official endorsements. 

Biden has also received many endorsements from former Cabinet officials he served with during the Obama Administration, organized Labor groups and even disaffected Republicans.

Most prominently the Democratic National Convention featured a host of disaffected Republicans endorsing Biden. This list included former Ohio Governor and 2016 Republican presidential hopeful John Kasich and has been joined since by Cindy McCain, the widow of Sen. John McCain (R-Az.).

This year, as Trump has sought to cast himself as the law and order candidate, he has received the backing of major police unions, including the largest police union in the United States. The Fraternal Order of Police representing over 300,000 police officers endorsed Trump, citing his support for law enforcement during the protests that erupted in the wake of the killing of George Floyd.

Despite some high profile abstentions, the Trump campaign has also received major support from Republican lawmakers and their traditional allies. In contrast to 2016, where the release of the Access Hollywood tape set off an October scramble for Republican lawmakers with many Republican lawmakers withdrawing their endorsements or tempering their support, Republican lawmakers are largely unified behind Trump. 

Prominent exceptions to this rule include Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) who has publicly said he did not vote for Trump. Romney, who voted for Trump’s removal from office during his impeachment trial earlier this year, has emerged as one of the President’s most stalwart critics on the Right. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) has also refused to say whether she will vote for Trump. 

Beyond individual lawmakers, some high-profile former Republican strategists and political operatives have also garnered attention. The Lincoln Project and Republican Voters Against Trump have both assailed Trump and aimed at promoting Biden’s candidacy.

Newspapers have also often been touted as coveted endorsements, despite limited evidence of their persuasiveness. In 2016, Hillary Clinton far outpaced Trump in newspaper endorsements. 

In this category, Biden retains a commanding lead. Over a hundred newspapers across the country have endorsed his candidacy. The Manchester Union Leader made headlines recently when it endorsed Biden, the first time it has endorsed a Democrat in over a hundred years. 

Meanwhile, Trump has the support of just six daily or weekly newspapers. 

Each campaign is entering a time-crunch during the last few days before the election. Early voting is already underway with more than 60 million Americans having voted. Election Day is Nov. 3. 

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