In his final speech before traveling to Washington and assuming office as the 46th President of the United States, Joe Biden couldn’t contain his tears.
He thanked the people of Delaware, the state where he lived for almost 70 years, for the support and said he was very sorry for his son Beau, who died in 2015 from brain cancer. “I have only one thing to regret: he’s not here,” Biden said, visibly moved.
This Wednesday (20), the Democrat will make history by taking control of the White House in one of the most frightening moments in American history. At 78, Biden is the oldest man to reach the presidency of the United States and is on a mission to command a nation divided and devastated by a severe economic crisis and pandemic that has already killed more than 400,000 people nationwide. .
Unprecedented New Era credentials include Kamala Harris, the first black woman to hold the U.S. vice presidency, and who will play a definitive role in what has become Biden’s main challenge in the years to come: actually managing.
The advancement of the century’s biggest health crisis, political violence and the Donald Trump impeachment debate are expected to dominate the early years of Democratic rule, and experts say it will be difficult to do much more than these topics. by mid-2022.
The Democratic Party has a majority in the House, and Kamala will be entitled to a decisive vote in the Senate, split between 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans. The fragile numerical majority, however, is not enough to approve all of the measures Biden promised, especially those that require at least 60 votes to gain legislative approval without obstruction from opponents.
“Biden will have a full box on his desk, but the first item is the coronavirus,” says Melvyn Levitsky, a professor at the University of Michigan and a former US diplomat in Moscow.
All other issues, including those related to foreign policy, he said, will have to be dealt with amid the dispute between the various wings of the Democratic Party and the Republican ranks.
Oliver Stuenkel, professor of international relations at FGV-SP, recalls that Barack Obama had an even larger majority than Biden in the Senate at the start of his first term, but failed to adopt meaningful measures on the climate and the immigration, for example.
“Obama wanted to make changes in the health care system, with Obamacare, and he had to give up a lot to focus on one theme. In Biden’s case, that theme is already given, it’s the fight against the pandemic, and I find it difficult to have room for much more than that in the first two years, ”he adds.
In politics for 48 years, as alderman, senator and vice president of Obama, Biden knows he will have to use his moderate profile and known conciliatory ability to negotiate with both sides of the board in the middle. of the radicalization instilled by Trump.
Still on the campaign trail, part of the Democratic team believed his election could normalize the country’s situation and pacify divisions even within the Republican Party, but escalating acts – which resulted in the invasion of Capitol Hill on January 6 – showed that the Domestic terrorism has become one of the main threats in the United States.
When Biden delivers his first speech as president shortly after noon (2 p.m. Brasilia time) on Wednesday, the idea that Americans need unity and pacification if the country’s soul is to be saved and its fractures broken, healed. The Democrat wants to send the message that the nation has challenges, but there is hope to resolve the issues.
In his memoir, Obama says his inaugural address in January 2009 is less withheld than the huge bow on singer Aretha Franklin’s hat, which occurred at the ceremony, or the President of the Court’s little blunder. supreme. John Roberts, who erred in reciting an excerpt from the US Constitution, misled him by reciting his oath.
In Biden’s case, experts say, the situation is different, as the Democrat has the most difficult departure from government for a president since Franklin Delano Roosevelt took over the White House in 1933, with the challenge of fighting the Great Depression.
The inauguration of a new president has a tradition of showing the peaceful transition of power in the United States and plans for the future. The first part of the story this year was devoted to Trump’s refusal to assist in his successor’s term, which was not the case 152 years ago.
The Republican does not fully accept the defeat and insists on the false claim that the elections were rigged.
However, more important than flowery rhetoric – which is not Biden’s forte – the inaugural address is expected to indicate how the new president will take action to unify the country fractured by acts and insurgencies that have resulted in the invasion of the Capitol. , which left five people dead.
The firstborn in a family of four, Biden had chronic stuttering in childhood, a condition that eased over time but is still cited as the reason for his half-hearted speeches.
The winning campaign for the White House last year, however, partly shaped the Democrat’s oratory and convinced those in attendance that with enough training and discipline, he is able to speak without much fear.
After his statement on Wednesday, Biden plans to sign several executive orders to overturn measures put in place by Trump.
The executive orders are a way of getting around the tight majority in the Senate – and the possible dispersal of House activities with the Republican impeachment debate. Maneuvers may however be the target of the Supreme Court, which today has a large conservative majority, from 6 to 3 votes.
In the first week of government, Biden wants to put the United States back in the WHO (World Health Organization) and the Paris Agreement. He also promises to vaccinate 100 million Americans against Covid-19 in 100 days and to approve the $ 1.9 trillion (roughly R $ 10 trillion) economic stimulus package.
The amount includes 400 billion US dollars (2.1 trillion reais) to fight the pandemic, in addition to direct payments to Americans, assistance to the unemployed, small businesses and to states and municipalities.
Biden also wants to lift the ban on entry into the United States for travelers from certain Muslim-majority countries, stop construction of the border wall with Mexico, an unfinished symbol of the Trump administration, and prevent separation. families at the border.
A specialist in bilateral relations, Professor Levitsky believes that with these and other measures, the Democrat will seek “to repair the torn fabric of our alliances”.
Generally speaking, Biden will attempt to restore American leadership in international affairs. Promoting American interests will be at the forefront, but it will no longer be just America. [como pregava Trump]. “
Biden’s profile is considered ideal for the turbulent times, as he is neither hyperbolic nor inflammatory, and has assembled a team of moderate experts, who have been preparing his government plan for months.
<< With decades of political experience and a clear desire to cross the corridor [do Congresso, fazendo a ponte entre os partidos], Biden is well prepared to mend strained or broken relations with members of the international community, while working towards the gradual reorganization of the world system, ”said Pauline Jones, political scientist.
After decades of serving as a senator in Congress, the Democrat knows that parliamentarians want to pass popular measures that can help in their national elections, but that they also often accept in return for embittering more controversial measures.
Members of his team, however, already see Biden’s struggles to balance projects that require bipartisan support with a nod to the far left wing of the Democratic Party, which will continue to come under pressure from structural reform. , in particular in the areas of health and the environment.
Biden’s first test of Congress will be confirmation of the names chosen for his cabinet – unlike Brazil, which is appointed by the president to certain high-level positions, it needs the approval of the US Senate.
The Democrat has previously said he expects parliamentarians to adopt a dual strategy that will lead to the impeachment trial of Trump – accused of inciting violence that led to the attack on Capitol Hill and the deaths of five people – and, at the same time, approve its nominations and pandemic relief measures.
Trump’s impeachment was already passed by the House last week and continues at the discretion of senators, making the Republican the first president to be twice impeached by MPs in the United States.
In January 2020, however, Trump was acquitted by the Senate, which at the time had a Republican majority.
Despite the election defeat and impeachment process, Trump broadened his electoral base and won 74 million votes in last year’s race – 11 million more than in 2016.
With 81 million votes, Biden must be careful not to try to make his shower of promises an eclipse of the political strengths of his predecessor.
In his farewell speech on the eve of Biden’s inauguration, Trump did not cry. “As I prepare to hand power over to a new administration on Wednesday at noon, I want you to know that the movement we have launched is only just beginning,” said the Republican.
In a divided nation, the paths to unity are slow and winding.