Since President Franklin Roosevelt took office in the dark days of the Great Depression in 1933, the first 100 days mark the culmination of the power of the new American leader and are often the most productive period for political victories.
In Thursday’s interview, Biden referred to the steep challenges Roosevelt faced in his first election, noting that current circumstances are “no different from the events of 1932”.
“There has been a fundamental change, not just here in the United States, but around the world,” Biden told Tapper. “We are in the middle of the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” he noted. With every change in technology, he said, Americans are thinking, “Will there be a middle class? What are people going to do? … There’s real, real anxiety.”
In his first inaugural address, the FDR told Americans that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself,” confirming a demoralized citizenship amid a banking crisis that threatens to destroy an already devastated economy.
Since Biden Roosevelt, every president has taken office under the most extreme domestic circumstances, his illnesses and deaths raging, and millions of Americans are at risk of being unemployed, hungry, or losing their homes.
Like its democratic predecessor, it uses the iconic opening moments of its cycle to bring together exhausted people to come together, this time on the common cause – with new vaccines – this time to defeat the virus and save the economy.
However, the question arises as to whether Biden’s call for national unity resonates among those who did not vote for it after Trump relentlessly challenged the legitimacy of his victory in the presidential election. But Biden’s call to action may be more urgent as the virus, with relatively rudimentary health care systems, takes root in the heartland that escaped the first wave of infection, concentrated in many cities that tend to vote for Democrats.
Biden’s interview – the first since the election that included Harris – underlined a complete correction of attitudes towards the virus. The pandemic has never been more severe than it is now in the United States. In the midst of record mortality data and hospitalization, one American dies every 30 seconds. Doctors and nurses were exhausted months later in the overflowing, scarce Covid wards.
More than 276,000 people died from coronavirus in the United States, and the nation set a new record for hospital treatment on Thursday, with more than 100,667 people treated for Covid-19.
However, the current president ignores the massacre as he follows his fantastic lies and claims that the election was stolen.
Trump often mocked wearing masks. It organizes festive parties at the White House, opposing the health recommendations of its own government. When he returned home after his fight with the Covid-19 in a military hospital, he famously turned to the cameras and tore off his mask.
Conversely, and if past behavior is a guide, it is conceivable that one of Biden’s first actions, after handing over his resignation title 47 days later, will be to replace the mask.
Biden asks Fauci to stay in his current role
As another sign of a new approach to the pandemic, Biden said in an interview that Dr. Anthony Faucit, marginalized and offended by Trump, had asked him to continue in his current role as the nation’s top infectious disease specialist in Biden’s administration and announced effective promotion worldwide. for.
“I asked him to stay in the same role as the previous several presidents, and I asked him to be a chief medical advisor for me as well and be part of the Covid team,” Biden said gesturing to Tapper. this includes the return of continuity and science-based policy-making after Trump’s wild presidency.
Biden stressed that he and Fauci talked about “not having to close the economy” if Americans follow other security protocols to prevent the virus from spreading. And he noted that even before they spoke, Fauci spoke regularly with Ron Klain, Biden’s incoming chief of staff, and the two developed a close working relationship during the Ebola outbreak. The president-elect also said during the interview that he would receive the vaccine publicly to show the public’s confidence in him.
“When Dr. Fauci says we have a safe vaccination, that’s the moment I stand in public and say that,” Biden said. People have lost faith in the ability of the vaccine to work. Even the numbers are amazingly low and it matters what the president and vice president do. ”
Earlier this week, former presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama promised that the vaccine would be made available to the public to help combat vaccination skepticism. Biden said his three predecessors “determined what to do.”
Help for states and struggling Americans
According to the president-elect, based on his talks with the country’s governors and 50 Democratic and Republican mayors, it is already clear that they will need a significant amount of money to get the vaccine where they need it.
“It’s one thing to release the vaccine – in some cases, some are frozen, others aren’t – and another thing is that the vaccine is transferred from the case to vaccination in someone’s arm. It’s a really complicated piece,” Biden said. noting that the governors and mayors told him they needed much more financial help to deliver the vaccine, which he described as an “incredibly expensive offer.”
“That’s why we continue to hope the Senate does something and responds to the immediate need to secure the dollar. But we’ll need a lot more,” Biden said after taking office. “It will literally cost billions of dollars to do this. We can keep schools open. We can keep businesses open. But you need to be able to distribute the vaccine.”
The president-elect noted that the Trump administration “cooperated with us late” and linked them to plans to deliver the vaccine, but said, “There is no help to get out.”
“Look at all the businesses that are in such serious trouble,” he said. “There is no money to help them. Come on Christmas, millions of people will see their unemployment exhausted. So a number of things need to be done.”
Biden called the $ 900 billion congressional aid package proposed by the bipartisan group a “good start,” but he said more help would be needed and urged members to focus on what struggling Americans need most.
“What is needed immediately is to make it easier for people who are under unemployment control, to make it easier for people who are thrown out of their homes after Christmas because they can no longer afford rent; mortgage relief; exemption for all things that are covered by the house adopted in the original bill, “Biden said. “People are very hurt. They are afraid of death.”
Biden’s comprehensively different Covid strategy, especially his call to disguise Americans in the first 100 days, is already welcomed by medical experts who are horrified to see daily Covid deaths in excess of 2,500 a day, even before the dreaded increase in post-Thanksgiving infections.
“President-elect Biden, as well as his leadership and hearing scientists, believe that if we all wore our masks for 100 days, we would significantly reduce the spread of the virus,” said Rick Bright, a vaccination expert at Trump’s administration who resigned after being warned by the administration. warnings about the early spread of Covid-19.
“Science shows that wearing a face mask reduces spread. I think that would have a huge impact,” said Bright, who now sits on Biden’s coronavirus advisory board, told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.
Biden says Harris will be a full partner
Since the first day Biden asked him to join the ticket, he said he was “very clear to me that he wants me to be first and last in the room” in major decisions. “So in all matters that affect the American people, I will be a full partner of the President-elect and the President.”
He reflected, for example, Biden’s position on how the administration handles a possible investigation of Trump after leaving his office, even though this is different from the tone used for Trump during his campaign.
Biden told Tapper that his Department of Justice will operate independently and will not direct them on how and who to investigate: “I’m not saying they will continue to charge A, B or C – I won’t tell them,” Biden said. role, not my Ministry of Justice, but the Ministry of People’s Justice. “
Harris, a former prosecutor who served as California’s attorney general, echoed the Justice Department’s call for independence, drawing a clear line between the Biden government and Trump’s approach.
“We’re not going to tell the Department of Justice how to do its job. We assume, and as a former lawyer elected in California – and I ran the second largest U.S. Department of Justice – I say that any decision from the Department of Justice, especially the U.S. Department of Justice, it must be based on facts, it must be based on the law, it cannot be influenced by politics, the period, “Harris told Tapper.
When Tapper asked Harris what would be in the ministry as vice president — whether he would lead a Covid-19 task force like Vice President Mike Pence, for example — Biden interrupted to answer the question. He said he plans to involve Harris in all the urgent needs that are needed at the moment, as does Vice President Barack Obama.
“Whatever is the most urgent need that I can’t provide, I trust I will turn to him,” Biden said, noting that this is different from former Vice President Al Gore’s previous approach of managing an entire emissions portfolio, such as the environment. “Look, there’s not a single decision yet on staffing or moving forward that I wouldn’t have discussed with Kamala for the first time.”