The Biden Administration - the first 1,500 days

WILMINGTON, Del. — President-elect Joe Biden made himself scarce on purpose Tuesday, while President Trump denied responsibility for the deadly siege of the U.S. Capitol carried out in his name and set off for a kind of anti-immigration victory romp along the Texas border.

In a bitterly divided nation groping toward Biden’s presidency eight days away, each man was speaking a language his supporters understand.

Biden seems determined to be the not-Trump, even at the risk of being a bystander to the waning days of the Trump Show. It was the same practice he followed during the campaign, to evident success.

By remaining silent Tuesday, Biden was staying on message, said Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, a political science professor at the University of Texas at Austin.

“He ran on being the adult,” she said. “And what do adults do? They roll up their sleeves and get it done.”

Some Democrats might prefer to see Biden battling Trump point by point, but Biden is hewing to his instinct that more people want to move on, DeFrancesco Soto said.

Yes! The grownups are in charge again. Let Congress take trump down. Joe has more important things to do, like some actual Presidentin’-- something we haven’t seen in four years.

A poll shows that some people are expecting some good outcomes from Biden.

That’s pretty good. He’s starting off with support. They’re not expecting Biden to heal political divisions in the country (39%) which is good since he’s not a miracle worker.

Tom Hanks, Demi Lovato, Justin Timberlake and Bon Jovi set to perform at the inauguration. Tom Hanks hosts.

Gee, this could make up for no New Year’s, no Christmas, no Thanksgiving, no Halloween, no Fourth of July, no Easter, no Fiesta (San Antonio), no Mardi Gras, etc.

A feel-good event with hope at the end of it. Sigh. I may actually be able to purge the memory of the sick feeling I had during the election returns of 2016… and the sick feeling I’ve had every day since then.

Biden named Jamie Harrison to be the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Solid pick. He raised an ungodly amount of money in his race against Lindsey Graham. He fell short in the final tally, but South Carolina had no business being anywhere near competitive.

Does make me wonder what’s next for Stacey Abrams, who would have been the obvious pick. Maybe she’s already decided she’s running for Governor again. It’d be a better platform for her if she’s looking at a Presidential run down the road.

Right on time…

A growing number of congressional Republicans are expressing opposition to President-elect Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion economic relief proposal, complicating the incoming administration’s push to quickly inject additional aid into the ailing U.S. economy.

Congressional Republican lawmakers and aides on Friday predicted widespread GOP opposition to the plan Biden unveiled the day before, particularly over its provisions to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour and provide $350 billion in state and local aid. Senior Republicans such as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) had not yet commented on the measure by Friday afternoon.

Democrats are likely to accuse Republicans of hypocrisy if they resist higher spending in response to the pandemic. The national debt increased by almost $7.8 trillion during President Trump’s tenure, rising to levels unseen since World War II, partly because of the GOP’s $1.5 trillion unpaid-for tax cut bill.

“We have to get serious about how we’re spending taxpayer dollars,” Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) said in a statement. “We cannot simply throw massive spending at this with no accountability to the current and future American taxpayer.”


Republicans were never going to get on board with any Biden coronavirus response legislation, at least not in numbers that would overcome a filibuster in the Senate. But that’s not Biden’s goal. The goal is to make a big show of trying to get Republicans on board, and when they successfully filibuster the bill, Biden and Senate Democrats can shake their heads with disappointment at Republican obstructionism and then say they tried for bipartisanship but have no choice but to pass major components of the bill through budget reconciliation.

I just hope that Democrats don’t play into the Republicans game of feeling like they too have to frown and fret about the national debt. Nobody really cares about the debt. And the best thing we can do to address the debt is to get the pandemic under control quickly and the economy back on track.

Not sure if this is the right place, but I found this amusing and comforting.

GSA will be paying $200K to unprecedented deep clean the White House before Biden moves in due to the threat of lingering coronavirus. It includes removing the carpet and deep cleaning the drapes.

I wonder if anyone is monitoring what Trump is taking with him as he moves out. I would not trust him not to steal all of the valuables.

lol Hide the china!

He’s probably not smart enough to hawk it. Does he want souvenirs of his failed Presidency? He’s stolen so much taxpayer money, a few trinkets from the hotel White House would be like stealing hand soaps.

I’m more worried about him stealing all the hard drives from all the servers. And keeping all the laptops.

Say what you will about Trump, but I don’t think petty theft is really his MO. Rather than stealing a bust of Lincoln, he’d more likely send it out for cleaning by a Trump owned business and return it in the same condition. The only thing being “cleaned” is the US Treasury.

I assume all the cleaning is also intended to sweep for recording/transmitting equipment.

The president and The President-Elect.

President-elect Joe Biden on Monday plans to volunteer at a hunger relief organization in Philadelphia as part of a national day of service coordinated by his inaugural committee ahead of his swearing-in at a heavily fortified Capitol on Wednesday.

President Trump has no appearances planned Monday but has been reviewing a long list of pardon requests and is expected to make scores of clemency announcements before departing from the White House for Florida, where he will live after leaving office.

That’s it in a nutshell.

Ah, the final “Fuck you” from The Donald, a boatload of pardons to the country’s worst criminals.

Trump had no appearances planned for many recent days. His official schedule says, “President Trump will work from early in the morning until late in the evening. He will make many calls and have many meetings.” The same thing is shown for many recent days.

Daily press briefings are back! Goodbye to twitterrhea!

I’m hoping there is a sign of a return to normalcy — and, we can hope, truth — in the fact that Biden’s spokeswoman, Jennifer Psaki, plans to hold her first briefing for White House reporters on Wednesday afternoon, just hours after her boss takes the presidential oath of office.

She has promised that this will be a daily exercise in the new administration.

Psaki recognizes that she assumes the role of White House press secretary at a moment when public trust in government and its institutions is at a low point, and “we don’t expect that to change overnight,” she said.

Her goal, Psaki said, is to employ daily briefings as a tool for conveying “policy, information and data and pull the curtains back on what’s happening in the White House.”

Wow, that’s weirdly disorienting. How will it feel not to have to wonder what bizarre thing is going to happen in the White House and everything related to it? I have my fingers crossed that it will feel like it did 4 years ago. I didn’t have to think about it.

This doesn’t go far enough, IMO, but it’s a start. The ban on lobbying for private companies could be longer. But then, I don’t think that should be done at all.

Biden plans to be more stringent on travel restrictions against Covid.

The first Senate bill will be on voter rights, the “For the People Act”, a direct counterattack on Republican voter suppression and gerrymandering.

This is a welcome sign that the Democrats are not going to fuck around, since obviously the Republicans will fight this tooth and nail. Does going straight in with a bill that has no chance of getting 10 Republicans on board signal an intention to nuke the filibuster? I very much hope so.

…a sweeping pro-democracy package that would widen access to voting and seek to ensure that executive branch officials operate in the public interest… The new bill would dramatically broaden voting access. It would require states to implement automatic voter registration, extensive early voting and same-day registration. It would restrict efforts by states to place suppressive hurdles on voting and vote-by-mail…The bill also seeks to restore protections in the Voting Rights Act that the Supreme Court gutted… It would require states to adopt independent redistricting commissions, a strike at likely GOP efforts to gerrymander House maps in 2021.

Pretty sad that this should even be “news.” But it is, and good news, too.

WASHINGTON (AP) — President-elect Joe Biden’s nominees to lead his national security team promised a turnabout from the Trump administration’s approach on the world stage, saying Tuesday they would keep partisan politics out of intelligence agencies, restore an emphasis on cooperating with international allies, and push for a stronger American leadership role.

Antony Blinken, Biden’s choice to be secretary of state, pledged to repair damage done to the State Department and America’s image abroad over the past four years while continuing a tougher approach to China. He said he planned to restore career officials to prominent positions in the department and strive to promote inclusivity in the ranks for the diplomatic corps.

“American leadership still matters,” he said at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Neither Blinken nor Biden’s other nominees for national security Cabinet posts encountered substantial opposition Tuesday.

Biden’s pick to lead the intelligence community, Avril Haines, promised to “speak truth to power” and keep politics out of intelligence agencies to ensure their work is trusted. Her remarks implied a departure from the Trump administration’s record of pressuring intelligence officials to shape their analysis to the president’s liking.

“When it comes to intelligence, there is simply no place for politics — ever,” she told the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Sigh of relief.

My bold. Good for you, Mitch. Smart move.