Monitoring Biden and other Contemporary Events

Reply Tue 19 Jan, 2021 11:52 pm
Since Joseph Biden will be sworn today, it's time to move the discussion along.
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Region Philbis
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 05:48 am

Biden’s First-Day Orders Will Include Mask Mandate, Blocking Keystone Pipeline
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Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 07:35 am
World leaders welcome Biden with praise, pleas, and parting shots at Trump
By Rob Picheta, CNN

Updated 7:35 AM ET, Wed January 20, 2021

London (CNN)When Joe Biden is sworn in Wednesday as the 46th United States president, he will take the reins of a country in crisis. But his task on the global stage will be daunting too.

World leaders reacted to Biden's inauguration by offering congratulations, jockeying for position at the forefront of his foreign policy agenda, and in some cases pleading for the reversal of his predecessor's policies. Among most messages was a palpable sense of relief, as the international community embraced Biden's pledge to reenter a series of global pacts and organizations that President Donald Trump cut loose.

Here's what leaders have said so far.

European Union
"Once again, after four long years, Europe has a friend in the White House," European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said on Wednesday, leaving no uncertainty about her verdict on Trump's relationship with the bloc.

"This new dawn in America is the moment we've been waiting for so long. Europe is ready for a new start with our oldest and most trusted partner," she said in the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium.

Von der Leyen said Biden's inauguration would "be a message of healing for a deeply divided nation and it will be a message of hope for a world that is waiting for the US to be back in the circle of like-minded states."

Biden has signaled a warmer partnership with Europe than Trump, who frequently criticized the EU on trade during his administration. His attacks on some European leaders led to frosty scenes at a number of summits. "From our perspective, Trump saw Europe as an enemy," a senior European diplomat told CNN last week. "The lasting impact of 'America First' is the US having fewer friends in Europe."

Hours before the inauguration, Beijing expressed hope that Biden would "look at China rationally and objectively" to repair "serious damage" in bilateral ties caused by the Trump presidency.

"In the past four years, the US administration has made fundamental mistakes in its strategic perception of China ... interfering in China's internal affairs, suppressing and smearing China, and causing serious damage to China-US relations," foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a press briefing Wednesday.

The Biden administration should, Hua said, "look at China rationally and objectively, meet China halfway and, in the spirit of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, push China-US relations back to the right track of healthy and stable development as soon as possible."

One of the main planks of Trump's foreign policy platform has been his trade war with China. The Trump administration's 11th hour declaration that China is committing genocide against Uyghur Muslims will heighten tensions with Beijing, though Biden's nominee for Secretary of State said Tuesday that he agreed with the designation.

"If the new US administration can adopt a more rational and responsible attitude in formulating its foreign policy, I think it will be warmly welcomed by everyone in the international community," she added.

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani called on Biden to return to the 2015 nuclear deal and lift US sanctions on Iran, overturning a key part of Trump's foreign policy program.

"The ball is in the US' court now. If Washington returns to Iran's 2015 nuclear deal, we will also fully respect our commitments under the pact," Rouhani said in a televised cabinet meeting.

He also launched a scathing attack on the outgoing President. A "tyrant's era came to an end and today is the final day of his ominous reign," Rouhani said of Trump's departure. "Someone for whom all of his four years bore no fruit other than injustice and corruption and causing problems for his own people and the world."

Biden has said he plans to return to the nuclear deal with Iran, which was signed during when he was Barack Obama's Vice President. Biden's national security aides have suggested they would like further negotiations on Iran's ballistic missile capabilities, though Rouhani has said the missile prograam is non-negotiable.

The German President said he was relieved that Biden would be sworn in Wednesday, calling it "a good day for democracy."
"In the United States, (democracy) held up against a lot of pressure," Frank Walter Steinmeier said in a statement.

"Despite internal hostility, America's institutions have proven strong -- election workers, governors, judiciary, and Congress," he said. "I am relieved that Joe Biden is sworn in as President today and coming into the White House. I know that this feeling is shared by many people in Germany.

Steinmeier also warned against the populist brand of politics that Trump embraced. "Despite all the joy we have about today, we must not forget that populism has seduced even the most powerful democracy in the world," he said. "We must resolutely oppose polarization, protect and strengthen the public space of our democracies, and shape politics on the basis of reason and facts."

United Kingdom
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was looking forward to a close relationship with Biden's administration.

"In our fight against Covid and across climate change, defence, security and in promoting and defending democracy, our goals are the same and our nations will work hand in hand to achieve them," Johnson said in a statement Tuesday.

Johnson warmly welcomed Trump on his visits to the UK, with Trump once claiming that the Prime Minister was nicknamed "Britain Trump." But the outgoing US leader was unpopular among Brits, and Johnson will be keen to secure a post-Brexit trade deal with Biden.

The new President could end up making two trips to the UK in 2021, with Johnson saying he looks forward to welcoming him to the G7 summit and to the hotly anticipated 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland. "Only through international cooperation can we truly overcome the shared challenges which we face," Johnson said on Tuesday.
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 07:41 am
It’s a pity Trump can’t take Johnson with him.

You’ve got rid of incompetent bad hair fascist, we’re still stuck with ours and the utter pig’s ear he’s made of Brexit.
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 09:40 am
I don't know how long the spirit of unity will last, but the leaders of the republican party spent the morning with Biden at the Catholic church instead of attending Trump's send off party.

Biden Prepares to Take Oath of Office in Capital Under Lockdown
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Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:13 am
The Republicans will cooperate with Covid relief and infrastructure funding.

The Republicans will cooperate with an immigration reform bill that they participate in creating (i.e. not the one that Mr. Biden is already sending their way).

There, the cooperation will end.

Mr. Biden is illegitimate and the American people reject him. That's why he has to hold his inauguration surrounded by thousands of armed troops.

And don't forget the impeachment trial. There isn't going to be any honeymoon period at all. The trial is going to be divisive.

If the Democrats drag it out and make it a long impeachment trial, 2021 will be all about Mr. Trump and no one will give much thought to Mr. Biden.
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:18 am
Once Biden takes that Oath in about 45 minutes, you will become irrelevant.
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:20 am
Wrong again. Mr. Biden and his illegitimate oath have no impact on my relevancy.
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Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:44 am
izzythepush wrote:
He’s always been irrelevant.

I am just as relevant as any other American citizen who votes. Probably more so since I'm able to come up with pretty good ideas and communicate them.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:44 am
oralloy wrote:
Mr. Biden and his illegitimate oath
What is the legal definition of an "illegitimate oath"? How is it different to the "designated presidential oath"?
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:45 am
I got a tad emotional when watching Kamala Harris taking her oath of office. Heaven knows how sane Americans must be feeling!
Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:46 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Walter Hinteler wrote:
How is it different to the "designated presidential oath"?

The primary difference is that Mr. Biden is illegitimate and is rejected by the American people.
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Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:48 am
@Walter Hinteler,
I know. That's why I answered it.
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Reply Wed 20 Jan, 2021 10:53 am
He is not. Not for seven more minutes.

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