This presidential election has polarized the entire nation, with young voters coming out in droves to vote for Biden. The debates and months-long campaigns have served their purpose.
It seemed to be a close call, but the Democrats have prevailed. Joe Biden has won the presidency, but he’s definitely got his work cut out for him.
Trump broke his silence to deliver a press conference on Thursday (5th November) filled with lies about the election process. He spoke about the result as if it was a conspiracy theory created by Democrats to remove him of power.
Without offering any evidence, he claims that by counting ‘legal’ votes, he is the rightful President.
But despite these claims, Biden’s managed to pull ahead and win the presidency, in part thanks to an overwhelming vote from minorities and people of color.
In Georgia, for example, there’s been a large increase in new, mostly Black voters. Thanks to Stacey Abrams and Fair Fight, more than 800,000 new voters have been registered in the state. Biden’s also captured the popular vote, breaking Obama’s record of around 69 million votes. Biden’s record is impressive as the vote was held amid a global pandemic.
With more than 100 million Americans voting prior to Election Day, Biden’s popular vote count swelled. Republicans and Democrats alike joined forces in an attempt to have a sane, rational man once again lead the nation.
Republicans and Democrats alike joined forces in an attempt to have a sane, rational man once again lead the nation.
In terms of electoral college votes, Biden was able to capture the majority and win the election, but it is difficult to bridge the gap between the popular vote and the electoral college system.
In fact, this gap is what led to Trump’s victory in 2016.
The electoral college system is one that’s clinging to the past, and its authenticity is questioned during almost every election.
We’ve seen Presidents win despite not having the popular vote, because of an outdated system, one with a dark history that benefits white Southerners. Biden has captured the electoral college and the popular vote, but it is time to restore democracy to its roots, with the people.
President-elect Biden’s first and most pressing task is to roll out a nationwide plan to fight COVID-19.
The initial priority would be to address the ongoing economic damage, and contain the virus’s rising death toll in the US.
Biden will still face a myriad of challenges, including from his own party.
Young liberal Democrats are protesting for nation-wide institutional changes in response to certain questions, and want to take big steps to ensure the country’s future.
He has already proposed a science-based plan. The plan includes a national mask mandate, greater financial assistance for the population, expanded testing and contract tracing, and measures to prevent higher bills for COVID-19 treatments. Biden has also vowed to work with Dr. Fauci, bringing the experts back to their domain.
Building a global public health infrastructure, getting involved in the global vaccine effort, and having international allies are all key to bring the virus down.
In his foreign policy, where Biden wants to put the United States “back at the head of the table”, according to one source.
Though Biden may not radically change the military or slash the Pentagon’s budget, he does plan to rethink the way the military is deployed, to advance American interests.
Going against Trump’s method, Biden wants to organize and host a global Summit for Democracy during his first year. The goal would be to renew commitments on human rights, and against corruption and authoritarianism, to have a ‘foreign policy for the middle class’, by investing in tools of diplomacy, development, and institutions.
The aim is to combat the waves of nationalism and exclusion, and try and rebuild an international order.
Biden will try and restore US membership of the World Health Organization (WHO), rejoin the Paris climate agreement, and reverse Trump’s travel ban for travelers from Muslim countries.
His administration is also more diverse than ever, with half his staff consisting of people of color, and more than half his staff identifying as women.
Kamala Harris as Vice-President is a big step forward in terms of diversity. We’re finally seeing some ethnic representation at the highest level, and bring some much-needed representation into the office. In terms of co-operation with Biden, Harris has shown signs of being a truth-teller, compared to Biden’s softer, glad-handing approach. This kind of criticism, of delivering hard news and cutting to the chase, will be beneficial to the White House.
We need a partnership that’s willing to be critical, to remind each other of commitments and duties, especially when an easy compromise is on the table. Kamala Harris is the kind of woman to cut no corners and lay everything on the table, and it’s this kind of energy the White House sorely needs.
Biden’s also vowed to sign legislation to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
One of his agendas during his first 100 days is to roll back some of Trump’s discriminatory executive orders, and advance the rights of the LGBTQ+ community.
It will definitely be a moment to remember, and one that can change the way the US sees itself, and how it’s perceived by countries around the world.
Of course, Biden’s first 100 days will largely be influenced by which party controls the House of Representative and the Senate, and by how many seats.
This is crucial, as without control of the Senate, most of his agenda will stay in limbo. Though Biden is optimistic about Republican senators working with Democrats, there are others who are more uncertain.
We’ve seen Republican senators not stand up against Trump, failing to stand against his irresponsible conduct.
From voting to acquit Trump during his impeachment trial to supporting his deployment of force against citizens during protests against police brutality (oh, the irony), Republican senators have done little to keep Trump in check.
The 2020 election was stressful, with most of the country being divided across partisan lines. It will definitely be a moment to remember, and one that can change the way the US sees itself, and how it’s perceived by countries around the world.
Now that Biden’s been elected President, he has to go beyond reversing Trump’s policies.
Rather than just putting out Trump’s fires, President-elect Biden must be able to take the country forward. So far, he has modern, progressive ideas for the US, but there is an uphill battle ahead.
Winning the election was just the first step.
I’m waiting to see how he’s able to pull this country out of its murky depths.