President-elect and Democrat Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States in Washington on the 20th.
In his inaugural speech, he said that the United States is currently facing a series of crises and challenges such as the coronavirus epidemic, rising social inequality, systemic racism, climate change, etc., and called for national unity, while saying that he would combat political extremism, white supremacy and domestic terrorism.
American public opinion generally believes that Biden’s task is arduous and complex.
He not only needs to deal with “near-term worries” such as the coronavirus epidemic and economic difficulties, but also to face “long-term problems” such as debt expansion and social tearing.
The road to governance is full of challenges.
Control the epidemic
On the eve of Biden’s inauguration, the cumulative number of coronavirus deaths in the United States exceeded 400,000, and the cumulative number of confirmed cases exceeded 24.23 million.
The U.S. media generally believes that controlling the epidemic is Biden’s first challenge after taking office. Biden also admitted in his speech on the 20th: “We are facing what is probably the most difficult and deadliest virus pandemic.”
Darrell West, a senior researcher at the Brookings Institution in the United States, said in an interview with Xinhua News Agency that controlling the epidemic is the “number one task” after Biden took office.
If the epidemic is controlled, other problems will also have the opportunity to be solved. Clay Ramsay, a researcher at the University of Maryland in the United States, believes that whether the epidemic can be controlled will affect people’s confidence in the new government.
According to U.S. media reports, Biden’s previously announced anti-epidemic measures include: encouraging everyone to wear masks; strengthening testing and tracking; and promoting the production, storage, distribution and vaccination of coronavirus vaccines through the use of the Defense Production Act.
In terms of epidemic prevention measures, resumption of work and production, and the allocation of medical resources, it has always been difficult to coordinate between the federal government and local governments of the United States, and the progress of vaccine distribution is far lower than expected.
The continuous surge in cases has made experts worry that the health care system may “total collapse”.
Amesh Adalja, an expert at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, pointed out that Biden’s “biggest and most lasting challenge” is to deal with the long-term underfunding and neglect of the public health system.
In addition, the New York Times editorial believes that in order to defeat the epidemic, the Biden administration also needs to win a series of “political battles” and try to defuse the widespread burnout caused by the long-term epidemic.
Restore the economy
The U.S. economy has been exhausted by the epidemic. A large number of enterprises have closed down or gone bankrupt, many workers have lost their jobs, and the number of people applying for unemployment benefits remains high.
Federal Reserve Chairman Powell said recently that the U.S. economy is experiencing a “difficult winter” as the epidemic continues to spread.
Biden made the restoration of the U.S. economy a priority in his previously announced 100-day policy plan.
He has proposed an economic rescue package totaling $1.9 trillion, of which about $1 trillion will provide economic support to American families hit by the epidemic and about $440 billion to provide assistance to small businesses and local governments struggling with the epidemic.
Although Democrats hold control of both houses of Congress, the seat advantage is not obvious, and many Republicans oppose the federal government’s further sharp expansion of the deficit and the push up of government debt, which means that it is unknown whether Biden’s rescue plan will be successfully passed by Congress.
Coupled with the need for the Senate to hear the impeachment case against former President Trump, this may affect the Senate review process of the rescue plan.
Former Federal Reserve Chairman Yellen, who was nominated by Biden as the new finance minister, said recently that the coronavirus epidemic is devastating and if the federal government does not take further action, the U.S. economy may experience a longer and painful recession and leave long-term trauma.
However, Michael Boskin, an economist at Stanford University in the United States, believes that the federal government’s intervention in the economy should be limited.
The huge fiscal deficit cannot be indefinitely sustained, interest rates will eventually rise, and the United States will pay the price for the swelling debt at some point in the future.
Over the past four years, partisan politics in the United States has intensified, social tearing has intensified, “white supremacy” has risen, and racial antagonism has intensified.
The congressional violence on January 6th pushed the division of the United States to a climax. In this case, “solidarity” became a high-frequency word that appeared in Biden’s inaugural speech.
Analysts believe that American politics, social tearing and racial inequality are long-standing and deep-rooted, and even if Biden tries to resolve these contradictions, it is impossible to eradicate them.
“It’s unclear whether Biden will convince enough Americans to break from partisanship and win their approvals,” New York Times website analyzes the site.
The Wall Street Journal pointed out that Biden not only faces the challenges of the coronavirus epidemic, but also responds to Trump’s impeachment case, sharp partisan contradictions, etc., which will make it more difficult for him to unite America.
On foreign affairs, Biden will work to repair the international image of the United States and its relationship with allies.
On the first day of his tenure, he signed an executive order announcing that the United States would rejoin the Paris Agreement and return to the World Health Organization.
However, Blinkin, who has been nominated as Secretary of State of the Biden administration, said recently that based on the past few years, allies and partners will question the sustainability of the commitments made by the United States, and it is not easy to dispel these doubts.