February 12, 2019

2020 is only a year away and promises to be a significant year for U.S. politics. Donald Trump will run for re-election, and while it is too early to speculate about the outcome of the Democratic primary, the 2020 presidential campaign is likely to reflect the partisan divide that has been shaping the U.S. political landscape.

Top issues for the 2020 campaign

A survey conducted during the 2018 midterm elections revealed a significant partisan gap on several key issues. These issues include health care, foreign policies, how businesses should be regulated, and how systemic inequalities are perceived.

Healthcare is one of the top issues voters care about.

The survey revealed a clear divide between voters. It also found that GOP voters tend to see the tax reform and tariff policies as positive. These topics are likely to play a decisive role in the 2020 campaign.

Health care reform might be discussed in connection the Affordable Healthcare Act being ruled as unconstitutional. Immigration will be another top issue for the 2020 campaign. In 2018, 20 percent of voters considered border security as a top priority while 32 percent thought that providing a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants should merit primacy.

Other issues that could persuade voters

What topics do US voters care most about?

The current administration's spending and lower tax revenues are drawing attention to the issue of national debt. The federal deficit is expected to grow by an additional $1 trillion by 2020 and could represent 5.1 percent of the national GDP if spending policies don't change by 2022.

Reducing this deficit and increasing federal revenues could be key points for a Democratic candidate. Stagnating wages are an issue that is directly affecting voters. Numbers show the employment is going up and that wages are growing, but higher wages are limited to the highest paid tier. Inflation is also causing the purchasing power of most families to stagnate.

In 2018, California Representative Mike Levin won his seat, thanks to a campaign that focused on the importance of clean energy. Portland passed a clean energy fee measure. Nevada already has a clean energy ballot proposition filled for 2020, and clean energy and climate change could be topics that we hear about during the presidential campaign and other elections.

Why 2020 will be a crucial year in politics

The 2020 Census will impact politics. The results of the census will impact how districts are drawn, and some states will probably gain or lose seats in the House. Arizona, Colorado and Texas are expected gain seats while Alabama, Illinois and New York will probably lose seats.

Trump campaigning during the 2016 election race.

All the states will elect new representatives, and 34 out of 100 Senate seats will be up for re-election. Voters will also elect new state Senate representatives, and 11 states will hold gubernatorial elections. The next year is looking to be a turning point in U.S. politics.

It's too early to know who will run and where they will stand on key issues, but the traditional bipartisan divide and policies of the current administration already provide some clues into which issues we will hear about.

Now is the perfect time to start drawing attention to the issues that will impact our future. Net Impact has been advocating for fiscal responsibility, and you can make a difference by joining an existing chapter or creating one on your campus!