Editorial Notes

The reality of Trump's 'great country' will be questioned in US election: Yomiuri Shimbun

In the editorial, the paper says that US President Donald Trump's messages that contravene the unity of the people and international cooperation may leave a bad taste in the mouth even after the election.

President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden took rhetorical swipes at each other on Monday (Sep 7) as the presidential campaign entered its traditional homestretch on the US Labour Day holiday.

TOKYO (THE YOMIURI SHIMBUN/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - It is certain that the United States and the world have changed drastically through an unconventional style of governance. What is important is whether he has fulfilled his pledge to "make America great again."

The Republican Party held a convention in preparation for the presidential election in November and officially nominated US President Donald Trump, who aims for reelection.

It will be a virtual two-man contest with former Vice President Joe Biden, who is the official nominee from the Democratic Party.

Many presidents have taken the advice of bureaucrats and experts in proceeding with their policies. Mr Trump often relies on his own intuition.

His excessive emphasis on Twitter is also unique. Taking advantage of his career as a businessman who had no experience in public office, Mr Trump has made an impression of creating change.

Mr Trump has made politics feel closer to the public and is extremely popular among Republican supporters.

But have his actual policies produced results in terms of improving the lives of the people and stabilising international politics and the world economy? They must be severely called into question.

Measures against the novel coronavirus will be the largest point of contention.

Mr Trump refused to wear a mask in the early stages of the spread of infections, saying, "The virus will go away [SOON]."

The United States has recorded the highest number of infections and deaths in the world, despite being a country with advanced medical treatment.

Mr Trump had expected to proclaim a robust economy as one of his achievements. It is undeniable that he disliked the economic downturn caused by measures to prevent infections, and as a result, he has been slow to implement preventive measures.

Whether Mr Trump will be able to balance the containment of the coronavirus' spread with economic activities will influence the outcome of the election.

It is worrisome that Mr Trump's tactics of stirring fear and hatred of the "enemy" may become more radical in order to solidify unity among his supporters.


Mr Trump has labelled the Democratic Party as a radical leftist party that brings about violent demonstrations and disorder.

Based on his own view of the world that the United States has been exploited by other countries, he is strengthening his claim that if Mr Biden wins, China will take over the United States entirely.

Messages that contravene the unity of the people and international cooperation may leave a bad taste in the mouth even after the election.

It is also questionable that Mr Trump is refusing to strengthen the system of mail-in ballots, which are expected to increase sharply, as a measure to prevent infections in the presidential election.

If the distribution and collection of ballots is delayed, a large number of votes could be nullified before the vote-counting deadline, or ballot counting could be delayed.

Mr Trump claimed that the Democratic Party is planning postal ballot "fraud." His claim can be considered a strategic move to reject the election outcome if he loses, by connecting the confusion surrounding mail-in ballots with fraud.

Fair and prompt casting and counting of votes is the basis of democracy. It is hoped that thorough preparations will be made for the election, keeping it separate from political strategies.

The Yomiuri Shimbun is a member of The Straits Times media partner Asia News Network, an alliance of 24 news media organisations.