Letters: If Joe Biden steps down, so should Donald Trump

from Chicago Tribune Editorial Page  July 3rd, 2024

I, like millions of other Americans and people from around the world, watched the cringe-worthy presidential debate. Neither candidate inspires confidence in the United States as a world leader. What I find most interesting is Sunday’s editorial (“As America sank into the couch, Biden and Trump combined for a depressing farce. Enough,.” June 30) presenting valid reasons for President Joe Biden to step aside for another candidate. This was reinforced by Clarence Page’s column (who almost always sides with the Democratic Party) making the same endorsement (“The sad reality? Biden needs to make way for another Democratic nominee”).

During the debate, former President Donald Trump said that Biden was the only reason he was running and that he would rather be doing anything else, but he was compelled for the sake of the nation to run again. Biden said he is running to protect democracy and protect the nation from the influence of Trump and his MAGA followers. I agree with the editorial board; Biden should step aside. I will go further and say that the Republican Party should hold Trump to his word and have him step down as well, should Biden choose not to run.

The question on everyone’s mind is: Who should run? I would like to see a matchup between either former Gov. Nikki Haley, R-S.C., or Gov. Kim Reynolds, R-Iowa, and either Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, D-Michigan, or U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Illinois. In my opinion, a presidential race between either of these Republicans and either of these Democrats would be beneficial for the country, as well as our standing in the world.

— Scott P. Lauder, Webster, Wisconsin

It’s a win-win for media

Regarding the editorial: I understand what the Tribune Editorial Board says about the “debate,” but it’s what the board isn’t saying that leads me to write.

The only reason we have to suffer presidential debating this early is because the nominations are already a foregone conclusion. If the editorial board can declare Joe Biden unfit for office on the basis of a head cold, then how can it completely elide the far more salient evidence of unfitness on the part of Donald Trump, namely that he is a convicted criminal? But Trump will drop dead before he drops out. Considering what’s at stake in this election — the continuation of our democracy — Biden would hardly be inclined to quit the race also.

For the Tribune Editorial Board and the rest of the mainstream media, it’s a win-win. If Biden does follow the editorial board’s advice and quit, the board can unfurl its hardy “Democrats in disarray” boilerplate once more. If Biden denies the board that pleasure, then it can go back to hammering the age question all the way up to November, even afterward, if Biden wins.

But if worse comes to worst and Trump wins, I guess the board could tell us what democracy looks like in the rearview mirror.

— Jeffrey Hobbs, Springfield

Nullifying voters’ choice

The Tribune Editorial Board seems to be in favor of Joe Biden stepping aside and not continuing his campaign. My question to this assumption is: How is this not considered voter suppression? Millions of voters have cast their votes for Biden to be the Democratic nominee for president. Now, it’s being suggested that Biden should step aside and allow the party to come up with a better nominee — someone the American voter did not choose to represent their vital interests in democracy.

Is this the new game we are having shoved down our throats? Put a candidate up, see if he has no chance, then replace him with a hand-picked candidate?

Sounds like “democracy” to me.

— John Caponi, Darien

More suited as a ringmaster

Much has been said about President Joe Biden’s so-called weak performance during the debate, but the key word here is “performance.” He is not a performer, but an elder statesman who knows how to lead our country, work with allies, make hard decisions, listen to advisers, respond to citizens’ needs, put forth an agenda, work with those across the aisle, etc.

Biden’s opponent is a performer, a man concerned about himself, a person full of bluster with no regard for the country at all. If one were truly listening to Donald Trump’s claims, one would notice that facts were missing from his remarks. Instead, he relied on hyperbole and untruths. Yes, he has a strong voice, unlike Biden, who is soft-spoken, but this hardly makes Biden weak. Unfortunately, Trump seems to equate a loud mouth with intelligence.

I hope the voters will eventually realize that Trump is more suited as a ringmaster than a president, for he will lead us into a three-ring circus, just as he did during his first presidency. If that happens, “Send in the clowns”!

— Carol Van Durme, Chicago

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