The majority of Trump’s rhetoric regarding national security has been focused on radical Islamic terrorism and the threat posed by open immigration, especially immigration of Muslims and Muslim refugees into the United States, as opposed to science-related topics.
Bioterrorism: In his 2000 book, The America We Deserve, Trump stated that the U.S. needs to stockpile antibiotics in major population areas and train emergency workers to respond promptly to biological attack.
Cybersecurity: Trump discussed his views during a phone interview with reporters from the New York Times: "We’re so obsolete in cyber. [...] Certainly cyber has to be a, you know, certainly cyber has to be in our thought process, very strongly in our thought process. [...] I don’t think we’re as advanced as other countries are. [...] We move forward with cyber, but other countries are moving forward at a much more rapid pace."
Drugs: In a video posted to Facebook in February, 2016, Trump stated that, in order to combat the drug epidemic in New Hampshire, he plans to build a wall to stop drugs from coming to New Hampshire and the country. He plans to work with the addicted to make them better.
2016 Republican Party Platform
Infectious diseases: Supports combining significant private and public investment with the world’s top talent to combat new threats such as Ebola, Zika, Chikungunya, and antibiotic-resistant pathogens.
Cybersecurity: States that our response to cyber attacks should be "to cause diplomatic, financial, and legal pain, curtailing visas for guilty parties, freezing their assets, and pursuing criminal actions against them." In addition it suggests working to weaken control over the Internet by regimes that engage in cyber crimes; working to advance information-sharing among entities put in harm's way by cyber attacks; examining the possibility of a free market for cyber-insurance; expanding the U.S. cyber workforce; and protecting the cyber supply chain.
Electromagnetic pulse protection: Proposes the President, Congress, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense, the States, the utilities, and the private sector work together to enact legislation currently pending in both chambers to protect the national grid and encourage states to work to protect their own grids.
Internet: Recommends prioritizing internet firewall circumvention and anti-censorship technology.
Drugs: Supports the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, which is aimed at overcoming the opioid epidemic, and ensuring that no physician is penalized for limiting opioid prescriptions. Republican legislation now allows Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans to constrict patients to a single pharmacy due to the issue of over-prescription of drugs.
In her national security platform, Clinton states she will strengthen U.S. alliances and foster new relationships to tackle mutual challenges such as cyber threats, climate change, and highly infectious diseases.She plans to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons by enforcing the nuclear agreement and creating a broader plan to face Iran’s behavior.She considers climate change to be a “defining national security challenge of our time."
Cybersecurity: Clinton plans to work with allies to promote shared frameworks for cyberspace and hold nations accountable for cyber attacks. She expects to augment the U.S. Cybersecurity National Action Plan by empowering a federal Chief Information Security Officer and upgrading government-wide cybersecurity.
Infectious diseases: She states she will “remain vigilant and do more to prevent and contain outbreaks” of highly contagious diseases.” She believes that hotter and drier climates cause by global climate change as well as an increasingly connected world allow diseases to spread more rapidly.
Bioterrorism: In 2011, Clinton warned that new gene assembly technology could be used by terrorists to develop biological weapons. She stated, “The emerging gene synthesis industry is making genetic material more widely available [...] This has many benefits for research, but it could also potentially be used to assemble the components of a deadly organism.” She stated that the challenge is to maximize the benefits of such research to society while minimizing the risks that it could be used to create weapons.
2016 Democratic Party Platform
Cybersecurity: Guarantee a strategy across federal agencies by adding to the Obama Administration’s Cybersecurity National Action Plan, especially with the empowerment of a federal Chief Information Security Officer, upgrades to government-wide cybersecurity, and the empowerment of a federal Chief Information Security Officer.
Non-proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons: Strengthen the Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons Treaty, work towards the ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty, and stop the spread of loose nuclear material. Take advice from a new Nuclear Posture Review to determine continued ways to mold our nuclear deterrent with the goal of decreasing our reliance on nuclear weapons without sacrificing our national security obligations. Work to decrease excessive spending on nuclear-weapons related programs currently projected to cost $1 trillion over the next 30 years.
Infectious diseases: Support funding for diagnostic tests for the Zika virus, a vaccine, and treatment. Prepare for possible pandemics, including avian influenza and H1N1 by working with first responders and health officials to decrease the risks associated with unintentional or deliberate outbreaks of infectious diseases.
Gun violence: States that the CDC must have the resources required to study gun violence as a public health issue.