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Bill George

Harvard Business School Professor, former Medtronic CEO

I Voted for Joe Biden – Here’s Why

A Vote for Unity and Stability over Continuing Divisiveness and Chaos

On September 23 Penny and I voted in person at an early voting place in Minneapolis. I cast my vote for President for Joe Biden. Here is why I made that choice:

In the world’s most powerful leadership position, America needs a leader who will bring us together as a nation, in spite of our many differences. We also need a global leader who will reestablish America’s leadership of the community of nations so essential to address today’s global issues of security, health, income inequality, climate change and many others. As he has demonstrated throughout his 47 years of public service, Joe Biden is that leader.

Former Vice President Biden is a man with integrity, compassion, and courage who has worked throughout his career for the betterment of all Americans and for America’s leadership of the global community. Over his nearly five decades of public service as America’s views of important issues have continued to evolve, Biden has demonstrated his pragmatism is evolving his own views about race, health, sexual identity, and public safety, but he has never deviated from his values, which are deeply rooted in his faith as a devout Catholic. I feel confident that as President, he will govern as he has led his life, always striving to help all Americans have better, more fulfilling lives and to bring us together as one nation to address the serious issues we face now and in the future.

As an independent who is a fiscal conservative and social progressive, I believe Biden has a sound economic plan for America to recover from the ravages of COVID-19, with 3.9 million more people unemployed than at the start of President Trump’s term. He plans to expand jobs with a large infrastructure program, increase jobs and research into renewable energy, and broaden health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act, ensuring that everyone with pre-existing conditions can continue to receive coverage. To reduce income inequality, he is proposing to increase the minimum wage to $15.00 as many large employers like Amazon already have and to increase taxes on the wealthy; however, no one making less than $400,000 will see their taxes increased.

In the past 3½ years under President Trump’s leadership, America has seen continuing chaos and increased divisiveness. The rift between people’s political views, racial identity, gender, and values has grown ever greater to the point we are at risk of losing the essential values that have made America the greatest nation on earth for more than 200 years. President Trump has moved us far away from our founding motto, E Pluribus Unum or “Out of Many, One” that brought and kept us together through the Civil War, two World Wars, the Great Depression, and ongoing crises of leadership and values. The President’s actions throughout his Presidency have been to favor himself, his family and his supporters over the greater needs of the nation. He has used social media and his rhetoric to further split us apart over social issues.

In 2020 America is facing the greatest health crisis of the past 100 years, yet the President has failed to lead us through it, abdicating federal leadership while ignoring the advice of the nation’s leading health experts and scientists, indirectly leading to the deaths of many Americans that could have been avoided. In the wake of the racial concerns following the murder of George Floyd, he has used that event to sow greater racial divisiveness. And in the severe recession that resulted from the COVID-19, he failed to take the steps necessary to control the virus and safely reopen America’s economy, ignoring the reality that these crises are inextricably intertwined and their burdens fall much more heavily on lower social-economic groups.

If President Trump continues in office until 2025, I fear that we will lose many of the basic tenets of our democracy, as he strives for a unitary Presidency that dominates the other two “separate but equal” branches of government to give himself more power. In recent months he has further undermined our democracy by challenging the integrity of our voting system and his commitment to abide by the results of the Presidential election. If he continues as President, we will also slip further from global leadership and weaken America’s ability to respond to global crises in conjunction with other nations that enabled us to lead the world since World War II.

If Joe Biden becomes president, these severe crises will certainly not go away, as their long-term impacts are only now beginning to be understood. The wounds of the past 3½ years are so deep that it will take that long or longer to restore America domestically and internationally. But Biden has the temperament to consult with and utilize the best experts to resolve them while bringing us back together as one nation, while striving to work with other nations to seek out global solutions.

For all of these reasons, I voted for Joe Biden and encourage you to do so as well.