Debates 2020

Joe Biden Has No Realistic Plan To Reopen Schools

Trump didn't offer much in terms of concrete solutions either.

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The first act of the final presidential debate between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden centered on the two candidates' very different approaches to reopening the country—schools in particular.

Asserting that the mitigation efforts to thwart COVID-19 cannot be worse than the disease itself, Trump echoed sentiments he has expressed since nearly the start of the pandemic. Biden, on the other hand, signaled a greater willingness to reimpose lockdowns on the areas of the country if coronavirus cases rise.

"I'm not shutting down today, but look, you need standards," said Biden. "If you have a reproduction rate above a certain level, everybody says slow down, do not open bars and gymnasiums, until you get this under more control."

On schools—a pivotal issue for many American families—Biden said that more funds were needed to make reopening safe: Schools need to be able to hire more teachers, improve their air filtration systems, provide socially distanced classrooms, and implement other procedures to counter the pandemic.

"Schools, they need a lot of money to open," said Biden. "They need to deal with smaller classrooms."

Trump countered that the disease largely spares the young, and there's little evidence thus far of transmission between students and teachers in schools that have reopened.

Biden then attacked Trump for being insufficiently concerned about teachers' lives, unfairly characterizing the president's position as, "All you teachers out there, not that many of you are going to die, so don't worry about it."

These remarks should worry working-class families who want their kids to return to school in cities like New York City, Baltimore, San Francisco, Washington D.C., and Chicago. The most powerful forces on the side of keeping schools closed are the teachers unions, which have threatened strikes, dumped fake body bags in front of lawmakers' offices, and called in sick when asked to go back to their jobs. The union representing teachers in Fairfax, Virginia, has maintained that it will not be safe for their members to return to the classroom until at least August 2021. Union activists have taken the completely unreasonable position that there is essentially no way to reopen schools until a highly effective vaccine is widely available and actively working to reduce cases to almost nothing.

This means that any official who wants to push schools to reopen must do so over the objections of the unions. Biden has made it perfectly clear he will never be that guy—and reiterated that during the debate. His reopening plan hinges on schools receiving additional funding and support. That's unlikely to happen, but even if it did happen, it's quite likely that teachers unions would still oppose reopening. Biden has given every indication that he has no intention of bucking one of the Democratic Party's main sources of political support.

Despite his more aggressive rhetoric on the subject, Trump didn't propose any specific policy to help schools reopen faster, either, or to otherwise support families and kids who are struggling. That's a shame: The current moment calls for giving individual students and families more control over their own educational options, perhaps by linking public education dollars to students rather than schools. This is a project that the federal government—which gives billions of dollars to school districts—could play some small role in fostering; sadly, young people have become a very low priority in the time of COVID-19.

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  1. Joe Biden Has No Realistic Plan To Reopen Schools

    FTFY

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    3. That was an ass whooping.
      Like a boxing match where a guy is just getting bludgeoned round after round, and you start to feel bad thinking you might watch him get beat to death if the red doesn’t stop the fight soon.
      THROW IN THE DAMN TOWEL!

      1. You know it was a whooping because all the blue checkmark are claiming it a tie.

        1. Gotta be fucking deluded to think Trump ever makes sense.

          Good god, how do we have so many idiots in this country?

          1. At least Trump was coherent, and didn’t start every sentence with, ‘Well, you know, this guy…’
            ‘Listen, He did…’
            Just curious, from the debate last night, what would Joe do?

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  2. MAGA-loving Trumptard Robbie wants to KILL our union teachers!

    1. Does he have a newsletter I can subscribe to?

  3. naw whut Josephine Biden dont have no plan! Whut happen to my Obama Phone? Did Jo lose himself in those pants pockets?

    1. Debate drinking game?

      1. When Trump wins a point, drink Diet Coke. When Biden wins a point, drink metamucil.

        1. Debate cleanse game?

        2. When Trump wins a point, inject yourself with bleach. When Biden wins a point, drink water with one hand.

    2. The Obamaphone should actually be called the Bushphone!

      From the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society webpage: “Lifeline – Where did it Come From? The history and legal underpinnings of Lifeline”

      (https://www.benton.org/blog/lifeline-where-did-it-come), 2015

      “Lifeline telecommunications services have long generated controversy, but over the last few years, critics have especially vociferous, railing against what they have termed “Obamaphones,” wireless phones with modest free service allotments provided to low income users. (As discussed below, and as this snopes.com explainer says, the term is a misnomer in that the Lifeline program dates to the 1980’s and it was expanded to wireless during the George W. Bush Administration.)”

      In fact, the beginnings of the Lifeline program can trace its roots to the Postal Service Act of 1792. The history makes an interesting read, especially describing the impact of Reagan’s breakup of AT&T. I highly recommend it.

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    3. The Obamaphone should actually be called the Bushphone!

      From the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society webpage: “Lifeline – Where did it Come From? The history and legal underpinnings of Lifeline”

      (https://www.benton.org/blog/lifeline-where-did-it-come), 2015

      “Lifeline telecommunications services have long generated controversy, but over the last few years, critics have especially vociferous, railing against what they have termed “Obamaphones,” wireless phones with modest free service allotments provided to low income users. (As discussed below, and as this snopes.com explainer says, the term is a misnomer in that the Lifeline program dates to the 1980’s and it was expanded to wireless during the George W. Bush Administration.)”

      In fact, the beginnings of the Lifeline program can trace its roots to the Postal Service Act of 1792. The history makes an interesting read, especially describing the impact of Reagan’s breakup of AT&T. I highly recommend it.

  4. I would’ve spat liquid if I’d had any in my mouth when Biden said character, integrity, and ethics would be on the ballot. Does he really want to go there???!!

    1. It’s okay, the press will make it true for Joe. For examples see tomorrows Roundup.

      1. Odds the business partner press conference gets a mention vs it gets mentioned and ridiculed?

  5. Schools are open all across the country. How are they doing?

    Hint: Schools aren’t a major source of corona spread and we have known this for months.

    1. Georgia schools have been over for over a month.

      We have 7600 deaths while infected. In 8 months.

      650,000 Americans die every year from heart disease- CDC. A bunch of those are in the South.

  6. If Trump is this great libertarian-ish President, then why isn’t his response to these COVID questions that the government has no authority to shut down economies or force people to wear masks or whatever.

    There is no moral authority for the government to save us from a virus. Why can nobody simply say that?

    1. Because practically nobody in the audience (certainly not swing voters) would believe it, and everybody would think he was ducking the question.

      1. Exactly.

        He did offer a libertarian position, but he coached it in terms necessary to win a national election.

        Which is basically the opposite of being an actual libertarian.

        1. If people truly think the government has the authority to mandate masks then there is no hope.

          1. Come on, man!

          2. There is no hope.

          3. Most people would fail a 7th-grade civics test if you gave them one today.

            1. And pretty much everyone in D.C.

          4. He did mention that Philly was getting sued about it if that helps you.

            1. Also Michigan’s lockdowns were unconstitutional.

              Trump mentions some things in a winner-take-all form. This way he doesnt alienate on the fence voters.

              Trump wont call Americans on the Left “Deplorables” because they might leave the Democrat Party and vote for him.

              Someone pointed this out before. Trump calls specific people things like “idiot” but they can change how he thinks about them.

              Lefties will always hate Americans who fight for more freedom and resist Democrat moves toward Socialism.

    2. I definitely agree in that I’d love to see a candidate on that stage making the case for removing federal involvement in education. Unfortunately, that’s not the case.

      As it is, I’d have to give the point to the guy who’s not explicitly calling for throwing more federal tax dollars at the ‘problem’.

      1. Which one is that? Trump has literally thrown trillions at the problem, and would be willing to throw more at it if he could ensure no money went to blue states.

        1. The money for the children (and Teacher’s unions)

        2. Congress controls the purse and forces the Executive Branch to spend the money.

          Trump’s great strength is he brings a non-politician’s method to spending that money. Still, there is only so much one man can do with a bloated bureaucracy.

          1. You have to be wearing some very MAGA-tinted sunglasses to not see Trump as a profligate spender.

            It can both be true that Trump is better on spending proposals than Biden, and Trump is absolutely terrible on spending.

      2. Disclaimer: I didn’t watch the debates, and I’m just going off a quick scan of Robby’s post and the comments. So if Trump did propose spending money to ‘fix’ things (which wouldn’t shock me), then I award no points and God have mercy on both their souls.

        1. It’s politically popular to not come down with the hammer of fiscal responsibility right now.

          It’s like trump says any Republican health plan will protect “preexisting conditions”. I cringe. He cannot politically say that Government is 100% getting out of the healthcare and health insurance business.

          BYW: Biden calls being infected with Kungflu a PREEXISTING CONDITION. Can you believe that stupid shit. Like having the flu qualifies as a preexisting condition.

          1. I would much rather have Trump be sketchy on specifics during election time and win, then Republicans shutdown the federal government from now until Jan 2024 to get budget cuts.

          2. Well, wouldn’t it be a pre-existing condition for insurance purposes if you had it when you started your insurance policy?

    3. His actions actually are that as he hasn’t implemented a national policy. So why are you attacking the feds for what states did leo?

      1. Maybe you couldn’t understand my post. It was a question as to why I should trust a supposed libertarian President who can’t even articulate why the federal government should have no authority over what I wear or don’t on my face or how my local school district chooses to run itself.

        1. No. I understand it clearly. You want to both sides and claim words mean more than action. Your post was very clear on that. Now defend Jo and her calls to be anti racist again.

          1. You want to both sides

            What? I didn’t even mention Biden or the Democrats.

            LC and others constantly make the claim that Trump is the “most libertarian-ish” President since Coolidge. I’m merely asking if this is so, why can’t he ever articulate a libertarian response to any questions. COVID and the questions about COVID seem to be the ultimate opportunity.

            I won’t defend Jo’s statement. I can admit that she has faults and I don’t agree with everything that she does or says.

            1. ‘more libertarian than ‘x” does not mean actually Libertarian.

              He’s not running as a Libertarian. He’s running as a Republican. As such, he has no reason to try to ‘articulate a libertarian response’ to any question. Hell, I’m not even sure he is trying to articulate a traditionally ‘republican’ response.

            2. Liberatrian-ish as in trying to cut the federal government overall.

              – getting rid of ObamaCare
              – 2 for 1 EO repeal
              – shutting down federal government for longest period in US history
              – border security advocate
              – appoints peson who desire to cut government waste not profit from it
              ….

            3. Trump being the most libertarian president of my lifetime is a testament to how dreadfully low the bar is, not to him being any sort of libertarian

            4. I dont know anything about Jo and dont care to right now.

              She cant win and the LP is full of Lefties and LINOs trying to keep Libertarians with pragmatic plans from being elected.

              Its Socialism under Joe Biden or not Socialism under Trump.

    4. The time to make these cases is during your administration. You have the bully pulpit. You can get the news to pay attention. You can get in front of the public and explain the idiocy of calling for government to save you.

      During the 2 minutes of extemporaneous answer with a combative moderator is *not* the time to do that.

      (Mind you, this is Trump’s missed opportunity. He had four years to make this and similar cases and he didn’t. Because- shocker- he isn’t libertarian.)

      1. Libertarians dont with nationally. You know why?

        Telling Americans that a Libertarian supports gutting the federal government by 75%+, ending social security and medicare immediately is not popular.

        Incrementalism worked for Lefties to fuck the USA up, so it appears that incrementalism to roll back Socialism might be the solution and Trump is a popular person to do it.

        1. Incrementalism will never work.
          Cut one program out of one thousand and you’ve created an aggrieved constituency to mobilize against you, and cut costs for the majority by only 0.1%. They won’t fight for a negligible gain.

          Throw it all out at once and eliminate the income tax, and suddenly a lot of people will see the benefit to themselves. They just don’t think it’s realistic to cut spending by 50% all at once yet.

    5. I would love to see candidates for president say “that is not something the president has any power over” to all kinds of questions.

  7. Trump is never going to give the perfect libertarian answers, but through his actions we know he is not trying to shut down the economy or force everyone to wear masks. Isn’t that enough?

    1. Supposed to be a response to Leo

    2. At one point he bragged about “shutting it down.” He didn’t, but it says a lot that he thinks he did shut anything down.

      1. It was travel at the time. But you knew that.

    3. the Left calls that a “lack of leadership”

  8. No.

  9. Trump didn’t propose any specific policy to help schools reopen faster, either, or to otherwise support families and kids who are struggling. That’s a shame: The current moment calls for giving individual students and families more control over their own educational options, perhaps by linking public education dollars to students rather than schools.

    No, it’s not a shame, because that wouldn’t’ve addressed the question. No plan is needed to reopen public schools. Private schools opened just by opening.

    Biden talking about smaller classrooms and hiring more teachers seems to mean he’s expecting this to be a long lasting enough situation to justify rebuilding school buildings! Crazy along with the Plexiglass for bars and restaurants. Of course the Founding Fathers had the wisdom to allow for deficit spending for such situations.

    1. This.

    2. “Private schools opened just by opening.”

      Which, to be fair, is the point Robby was making. Had Trump called that out and advocated for giving federal funds to parents to take to these private schools, it could have helped.

      Of course most funding actually comes at the state level. Nevertheless, Trump could still advocate for “Backpack Funding” models, whether the states sign up or not.

      1. Tie federal education grants to state and local education money being child-portable. All the states will quickly fall in line to avoid losing those federal dollars. (Just look at what tying federal highway funds to state’s setting the drinking age at 21 did).

    3. Georgia public schools have been open for over a month.

      Kids get picked up by school buses.

  10. Supposed to be a response to lap. This website really is shit.

  11. “Joe Biden Has No Realistic Plan To Reopen Schools”

    And he’s a crook!

    1. Do you think it’s a legitimate role of any President to open schools?

      1. If they are public schools? Sadly yes. I may not think you should be the manager at my local taco bell. That doesn’t change the fact that it is your responsibility to pull the chain on the “Open” sign when the day starts.

        1. (Mind you, my personal preference is that we murder-kill the Department of Education and NCLB. But until then, yeah, there is a role at the federal level to get schools open.)

          1. This is why I framed my question about “legitimate” roles of the President.

  12. BTW, this was the best presidential debate, including those in primaries, that I’ve heard in several election cycles.

  13. I love Biden’s apparent assumption that “no war in Korea” isn’t good enough. Apparently it’s got to be “no war, and rub their nose in it”.

  14. Is there anyone with libertarian leanings who, after hearing this debate, could possibly think Biden was even in the same league as Trump? No matter what issue they were discussing, Trump’s answers were far better for individual liberty.

    1. None of the above clearly won, IMO.

      1. So no honest answer from you.

        1. I was being honest. The two debates cemented my belief that NOTA was the best candidate on stage.

      2. Nobody cares.

      3. Trump will win reelection and he is the better choice.

        Biden was stuttering like his brain was misfiring. Biden says ridiculous things like Kungflu “is a preexisting condition”.

    2. Whether he’s in the same league as Trump isn’t really the issue–he’s clearly not healthy enough to sit in the Big Chair anymore. He had his chance in 2016 and blew it to defer to Her Majesty. Hillary’s got to be rage-drinking right now after seeing that. Calling Trump “Abraham Lincoln,” and saying he’s going to ban fracking and oil drilling when his election hinges on flipping PA back to the Dems was utter lunacy, especially when Trump has a legitimate shot at flipping Minnesota to the Republicans for the first time in nearly 50 years.

      Someone must have put some kind of governor on Trump to give him a zap whenever he felt like interrupting. That was his big mistake in the first debate, and the Democrats putting all these restraints on him might have actually backfired, because Biden’s meds were apparently wearing off as the debate wore on.

      1. What is he on? Pupils are dilated so he’s squinting the whole time. No visible whites in his eyes makes him look evil from a pure optics level

        1. He just looked really old and semi checked out to me, like that great uncle who sits in the big chair all day at Christmas, nice guy but you’re not going to take anything he says seriously. For being over 70 Trump looks really on the ball and engaged.

          1. Looked like he had a haircut, maybe even lost a few pounds in the face.

            I tapped out about a half hour in, due to company, but Biden claiming he’s going to get rid of oil and zero net CO2 emissions by 2025 is huge. No one cares positively about those issues, that wasn’t already voting for him.

            1. You might like to give the rest a watch at some point.
              The last 30 minutes was just a brutal destruction of Biden.

              1. I felt sorry for Biden because he got crushed by Trump and Biden really thinks he is “in charge” of the Democrat party.

                This is like telling a senile old relative that he can drive his car any time he wants but the family sold the car weeks ago.

          2. I felt bad over and over for Biden. He wont win and he was told he had to do this. It’s borderline elder abuse.

            Biden was the only Democrat that Democrats think can actually beat Trump and Biden wont beat Trump.

            1. Part of me thinks Biden knows that he and Hunter will be indicted if Democrats are not in the White House.

              Then Democrat leaders told Biden he could actually win when they knew he wont.

              Its why Obama is stumping in the last two weeks before election day. Democrats are trying anything because Biden wont win.

        2. Probably adrenochrome or a similar type of stimulant.

          Keep in mind that he’s 77 years old and his mind isn’t all that sharp anymore, so god knows what his campaign team has got him on.

  15. Good. Neither of them should be involved in schools in the first place.

    1. Yes! Abolish the Fed… eral Department of Education.

  16. My kids school had been open since August.
    Did it without Trump. Dunno why they would need Biden’s help.

    My what kind of a libertarian wants the president to have a day in school reopening plans anyway?

    1. Trump was just giving his opinion. Biden wanted to shovel money at it, given that the Founding Fathers had the foresight to allow deficit spending.

      1. I cant believe Biden said that about deficit spending. No Libertarian should even put a Democrat in office based on that statement alone.

        1. Republicans do spend too much but they can be convinced you dont have to deficit spend.

          Democrats are all about spending more taxpayer money.

  17. No no no Robby you keep that leftie light shining!

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  19. The pandemic is a reason and the time to push more public funding of nonsense-teaching private schools?

    Clingers are just lousy people. Thank goodness they get stomped by better Americans in the culture war.

    Open wider, clingers. The reckoning approaches.

    1. The pandemic is a reason and the time to push more public funding of nonsense-teaching private schools?

      Tell that to all the urban white liberals who send their kids to them, hicklib.

      1. Ahahahahahahahahaha
        Yes. Hypocrites. Obama and every other pol with kids in DC does the same.

  20. Here’s the best argument- Trump IS president and this is the shitshow we’re dealing with. A moldy ham sandwich could do a better job at this point.

    1. Please outline your plan then we’d all love to hear it.

    2. Democrat created hysteria with Kungflu.

      Trump is the best President in US History thanks to Democrats.

    3. TFW a progressive argues for smaller government.

  21. The President shouldn’t be opening or closing schools, or sending them any plans. Education is a local responsibility.

  22. No Joe Biden has no plan on how to open the schools nor the businesses. He will more than likely keep both closed more than necessary. I keeping the businesses and schools lock down will mean that the workers and the business owners will not be earning an income so for them to be able to get life’s necessities would have to depend upon the government. But this would drive the national debt beyond the ability of the nation to repay that debt even if most if the debt will be owed to the US citizens and residents. Under a Biden presidency he would have to implement the democrat platform which calls for massive tax increases. This would slow any business increase that might have other wise happened. That is not all that would be affected. The national $15/hr minimum wage would also force many employers out of business especially if this pandemic continues for any length of time. There is more in the Green New Deal also. That would force the price on energy to increase and with the increase of energy each resident of the US would have to pay more for everything they have to buy. California is far ahead of the rest of the US in switching to green energy and both gasoline/diesel for auto and trucks are higher than it is in the rest of the continental US. Electric has also had to go green and use more wind and solar and California’s electric is as it is with petroleum fuel is much higher than in the continental US. Now imagine that is what it is all across the US, what would cost your business. Well we know that everything runs energy and when the energy rates goes up then the cost of doing business in the US will be higher and when the cost of doing business goes it cost everyone in this country more. In other words that $15/hr minimum wage will not be any improvement for those who depend on that minimum. With these changes that will be coming will mean that more people will have to depend upon minimum wages.

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  25. I have no clue whatsoever as to how your “plan” of giving money to the students will solve or supplant the public school reopening impass. You didn’t bother to flesh it out. At all. Could you give us a hint?

    1. Robby,
      Why does your headline so prominently feature Biden’s lack of a plan in a large font while your counterbalanced statement that Trump didn’t have any plan either appears much smaller? You instantly destroy any credibility for yourself to every reader. Clearly the reader is in for a tilted comparison between the Presidential candidates. Here are some observations.

      Biden’s published plan – yes, it exists – supports the teachers because they are being told they should put themselves and their students in harm’s way with no protections, protocols, or infrastructure upgrades to accommodate COVID-19 driven changes. This is not a demerit. As a parent who has put four children through school, I applaud the teachers demanding adequate plans for reopenning. They’re protecting themselves and their students. Biden’s hypothetical Trumpist argument to teachers that they should have no fear of death IS absolutely appropriate! It’s a perfectly accurate statement Trump would make. It is because we’ve seen this inhumane logic from the President for the last four years. To wit: Taking babies from mothers’ arms not as a justifiable step in immigrant processing but primarily as large scale propaganda intended to deter families from crossing the border. Inhumane treatment of holocaust-like ramifications with 545 remaining children who will never be reunited with their parents. Assuring that citizens shouldn’t worry about COVID-19 since it only targets the elderly. Stating that children don’t exhibit symptoms from COVID-19, become immune, and are not a threat to anyone. Calling fallen warriors “losers” and “suckers.” Answering in one short sentence that John Lewis was a “great man,” when asked what the late activist and US Representative’s legacy meant to Trump, before immediately switching to a more lengthy criticism of Representative Lewis for not attending his inauguration. Incessantly pressing citizens to take a life threatening drug even after a clinical trial had to be stopped because of dangerous complications in patients. The list could go on. Biden’s mocking Trump comforting teachers is a valid premise showing the real consequence of demanding that schools open immediately. I hope you have the integrity to note your dismissive take on Biden’s comment when you report the first COVID-19 death of a teacher from returning to school. Unfortunately, it will happen.

      The teachers know that safety based on science is the essential concern. You fail to point this out as a huge component of their stance against reopening under Trump’s (so called) guidance. Any epidemiologist and public health professional will tell you that testing is the essential tool to monitor COVID-19 prevalence and to direct mitigations. I know since my wife with an MD, MPH, and epi PhD says this constantly. There is no more successful path to dealing with a pandemic barring a potent vaccine readily available. This vaccine we do not have now as Trump claims without evidence, nor will have anytime soon should the FDA stand firm against White House meddling with trial safety testing protocols (which has already begun). Trump has not offered ANY guidance on emphasising testing (quite the opposite as we know) as the barometer of safety for schools. Without this, any plan to get back to “normal” will fail. It should come as no surprise that this purposefull ignorance of a simple and effective concept is setting teachers against this Trumpist policy.

      So this is the sin of omission in your characterizing the merits of the debate arguments. The willful negligence of Trump to implement effective public health strategies against COVID-19. Even the reopening criteria put out by the administration was found devoid of any testing recomendations or metrics defined to monitor and evaluate the level of safety in a school. This wasn’t mentioned in your article. We see clear evidence already that attempts to reopen schools result in increases in cases, especially in younger people, that then require school reclosing. This wasn’t mentioned in your article. What plan from this administration IS being implemented to counter this ubiquitous problem?

  26. Educating kids in person Trumps most everything else, exceptions being “spike” areas… Which can determine that locally.
    Waiting until there’s a vaccine or universal testing or “zero cases” (way to go Fairfax teachers Union! What hard workers, dedicated to the kids) is not realistic and a ticket to further education losses in public schools. Not that they’re starting from a particularly high benchmark. (Now you have San Diego with the brilliant plan of getting rid of grades, testing and homework. Genius! What could possibly go wrong? Fucking woke idiots.)

  27. Joe Biden Has No Realistic Plan……For Anything

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