How 14 Policy Scenarios Might Change After the U.S. Election

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China

Biden wins: Biden teams with Europe to restrain China. “The Democrats are more likely to link economic, strategic, and human-rights concerns, taking relations into an even more difficult period.” 
 
Trump wins: Trump keeps the heat on China, though having won reelection he could revert to “my buddy Xi.” 

Budget

Democratic Senate: Still lacking 60 votes, Dems use reconciliation procedure to pass tax- and spending-related legislation with a simple majority that’s exempt from filibuster. 
 
Trump wins: Lame-duck status could set in quickly. “Generally second-term presidents who don’t have a strong base in Congress tend to not get a whole lot done.” 

Health Care

Trump wins: He pursues a lawsuit to have the Affordable Care Act declared unconstitutional. 

Social Justice

Biden wins: Dems push a policing bill that conditions federal aid on more training and accountability for officers. Congress shores up the social safety net with more Covid-19 aid, food stamps, extended jobless benefits. 

Regulation

Trump wins: A “bonfire” for rulebooks as Trump continues deregulation

Finance

Biden wins: Fed Chair Jerome Powell, FDIC Chair Jelena McWilliams, and other Trump appointees could stymie re-regulation attempts. 
 
Trump wins: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the housing finance giants, “are on a glide path to exiting conservatorship.” 

Taxes

Democratic Senate: The top individual rate, now 37%, returns to 39.6%. Payroll tax is levied on incomes over $400,000. Capital gains are taxed as ordinary income for high earners. Step-up in cost basis for estate tax is eliminated. Corporate income tax rate rises to 28%, from 21%. 

Courts

Republican Senate: Biden might nominate a relative centrist in the Elena Kagan mold to fill a Supreme Court vacancy, since the GOP would reject someone more liberal. 

Antitrust

Biden wins: Food, health care, and other concentrated industries—not just tech—are vulnerable to anti-monopoly lawsuits.

Filibuster

Democratic Senate: Democrats might get rid of the filibuster, which former President Obama in July called a “Jim Crow relic.” Without that constraint on the majority, policy would swing with each change in government control, as in Europe. 

Trade

Biden wins: Trump’s national security tariffs on steel and aluminum imported from key allies get rolled back. “No single act has angered our trading partners more.” 

Foreign Policy

Biden wins: Biden patches up differences with United Nations and other multilateral organizations, rejoins Iran nuke agreement, prioritizes Palestinian homeland issue with Israel.   

Environment

Republican Senate: Biden rejoins Paris climate accord but will have a hard time getting his $2 trillion climate plan past a Senate filibuster. 
 
Read next: The Nine Types of Voters Who Will Decide 2020

Rodger Baker, vice president for strategic analysis, Stratfor, a unit of RANE Network Inc.

Stephen Myrow, managing partner, Beacon Policy Advisors LLC.

Stephen Myrow, managing partner, Beacon Policy Advisors LLC.

Stephen Stanley, chief economist, Amherst Pierpont Securities LLC.

Bloomberg Government.

Bloomberg Government.

Andrew Husby, Bloomberg Economics.

Nathan Dean, Benjamin Elliott, Bloomberg Intelligence.

Nathan Dean, Benjamin Elliott, Bloomberg Intelligence.

Andrew Husby, Bloomberg Economics.

Brendan Dunn, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.

Stephen Myrow, managing partner, Beacon Policy Advisors LLC.

Nathan Dean, Benjamin Elliott, Bloomberg Intelligence.

Brian Pomper, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.

Rodger Baker, vice president for strategic analysis, Stratfor, a unit of RANE Network Inc.

Stephen Stanley, chief economist, Amherst Pierpont Securities LLC.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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