US Elections: Joe Biden Takes Office Today

US President-elect Joe Biden plans to sign a series of executive orders as soon as he takes power on Wednesday (1/20). The details of these measures are beginning to be revealed.

Biden will issue decrees to reverse immigration vetoes and return to the Paris Agreement on climate change on its first day at the White House, American media reports.

The president-elect should also aim to reunite separated families on the U.S. border with Mexico and will order measures on the use of covid-19 masks.

Within hours of entering the White House, Biden plans to sign a series of executive orders designed to make a clear break with his predecessor’s government, according to a memo published by the American press.

Executive orders are just part of an ambitious plan for his first 10 days in office, according to the memo. The president-elect is also expected to submit a new immigration bill to Congress, as well as his intention to get approval for his $ 1.9 trillion stimulus plan to help the country’s economic recovery after the coronavirus.

Biden also said his government would aim to provide 100 million covid-19 vaccines in its first 100 days in office, describing the current vaccine delivery strategy as a “deplorable failure”. “President-elect Biden will take action – not only reversing the worst damage from the Trump administration – but also starting to move our country forward,” writes new chief of staff Ron Klain in the memo.

Some of Biden’s first executive orders
1. Reincorporation of the USA into the Paris Agreement on climate change, a global pact to reduce carbon emissions

2. Revocation of the controversial veto on the entry of travelers from countries with Muslim majority

3. Reunification of undocumented migrant families

4. Mandatory mask requirement in federal facilities and interstate travel

5. Extension of a national restriction on home evictions due to the pandemic

The names of Biden’s cabinet

And that intention to change is precisely the first thing that stands out in the new government. Trump came to the elections with a cabinet made up of 20 men and four women, a single African-American (at the head of the Urban Planning Department) and only one Latina (in charge of small and medium-sized businesses).

In contrast, and apart from the historic fact that Kamala Harris will become the first woman to hold the vice presidency of the United States, Biden’s cabinet will be the most diverse in the history of the country and the first with gender parity. “As promised, this is a cabinet that represents what the United States is like, and that takes advantage of the full range of potential that we have in our nation,” said the president-elect.

Twelve of the 24 nominees by Biden to his cabinet are women (including two candidates to lead National Intelligence and the Treasury Department, something unprecedented), less than half of all appointees are white (four are Latino, one of them in charge of immigration), and there will be, if confirmed, African Americans in charge of positions as important as the Department of Defense or the representation before the UN.

Peace of mind for the ‘establishment’
Diversity – present not only in management positions, but also in the composition of the departments themselves – is not, in any case, the only common denominator of the new cabinet: most of those appointed have long experience in positions Responsibility publics (unlike many of those chosen by Trump: millionaires, ideologues or loyalists to the tycoon who were occupying government positions for the first time), and almost all previously worked in the Barack Obama Administration.

They are also widely recognized profiles in their respective fields, and also related, in principle, to the more moderate wing of the Democratic Party.

At the moment there will be no Sanders in the new US government (Biden revealed that he was about to include the senator from Vermont in his team, but did not want to put the Democratic control of the Senate at risk) or any Ocasio-Cortez. No one whom the Republicans can accuse of being ‘socialists’, or who can arouse misgivings in the more conservative Democrats.

Because even though the Senate now has a Democratic majority, and the risk of Biden’s candidates being rejected in the Upper House is less, the internal struggle in the Democratic Party between ‘moderates’ and ‘radicals’ not only continues to exist, it is likely to mark many key moments in the new legislature.

These are, one by one, the new most important men and women of the president:

Secretary of State: Antony Blinken
Centrist and moderate like Biden himself, Antony Blinken (58 years old) will be in charge of international relations at the head of the State Department (equivalent to a Foreign Ministry), one of the most important positions in the Government.

Antony Blinken.
Antony Blinken, known as Tony, was already number two in the Department during the last two years of the presidency of Barack Obama. He speaks French fluently and is a staunch defender of multilateralism, so he will try to reinforce the worn out relations with allied countries, punished by the Trump Administration during the last four years.

The one who in all probability will be the new Secretary of State believes in the reception of refugees in the United States, and in Europe as a main partner. With regard to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, it does not seem reasonable to expect a major change in US policy: Blinken argues that the two-state solution is “the only way to defend the future of Israel as a democratic and Jewish state.”

He will have in his hands, for example, the management of Biden’s plans to re-integrate the United States into the Paris Agreement against climate change.

Antony Blinken, then the US Deputy National Security Adviser, during a press conference at the White House in 2013.

Secretary of Defense: Lloyd Austin
Retired General Lloyd Austin’s nomination for secretary of defense (and head of the Pentagon) is as historic – he would be the first African-American to hold the job – as it is controversial.

Then-Lieutenant General Lloyd Austin, along with then-Vice President and current US President-elect Joe Biden, during a ceremony in North Carolina.
Biden’s pick to lead Pentagon makes Democrats uncomfortable
The controversy lies in a law created in 1947 and amended in 2008, according to which it takes at least seven years for retired military personnel to occupy the post of Secretary of Defense. Since Austin has only been a civilian for four years, to join Biden’s cabinet, he will need not only the approval of the Senate, but the approval of an exception by both houses of Congress that allows him to circumvent the law.

Biden claimed in proposing it that he “would not ask for this exception if he did not believe that this moment in history demands it.”

Austin, 67, was the head of Central Command in charge of operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen and Syria, most of the countries where the US is at war. As a general in the Army, he held that position between 2013 and 2016, when he retired after almost 40 years of service.

Secretary of National Security: Alejandro Mayorkas
Biden’s National Security team will be led by a Latino, Cuban-American Alejandro Mayorkas, who already held a position in that group during the Obama administration. Mayorkas, undersecretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) between 2013 and 2016, will head an agency that is in charge of key issues such as border security and immigration.

Born in Havana in 1959, Mayorkas has also been director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services, one of the agencies that DHS manages. During his tenure, he led the development and implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the plan that the Obama Administration designed to protect thousands of young people brought by their parents from deportation. undocumented to the US when they were children (known as dreamers, dreamers).

His appointment has been interpreted as a nod by Biden to immigration after four years of Trump’s heavy hand.

Director of National Intelligence: Avril Haines
If confirmed by the Senate, Avril Haines, 51, will become the first woman to head the US Department of National Intelligence.

Haines served in the Obama Administration as a National Security Attorney and was Deputy Director of the CIA from 2013 to 2017. In fact, she was also the first woman to hold that second position, and during her time in office she decided not to apply measures. disciplinary actions against agency personnel who were accused by a Senate committee of having improperly accessed their computers.

Ambassador to the United Nations: Linda Thomas-Greenfield
The veteran diplomat Linda Thomas-Greenfield, 68, born in Baker, Louisiana, will be the face of Washington at the United Nations, in what is expected as the return of the United States to multilateralism.

Thomas-Greenfield was the Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs between 2013 and 2017. From that position she was charged with coordinating the Obama Administration’s policies for Africa.

During her more than 35 years of experience in the US foreign service, she has been an ambassador to Liberia between 2008 and 2012, and has held various positions in the legations of Kenya, Pakistan or Switzerland.

She dropped out of a diplomatic career in 2017 amid Trump’s controversial makeover at the State Department.

Secretary of the Treasury: Janet Yellen
If, as expected, the Senate ratifies her as Secretary of the Treasury, Janet Yellen, former head of the Federal Reserve (Fed), will be the first woman to occupy this essential portfolio (equivalent to a Ministry of Finance, or Economy), a milestone that she already marked by being the first president of the US central bank, between 2014 and 2018.

The president of the Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen.
Biden selects former Fed chair Janet Yellen as Treasury Secretary
Yellen will be in charge of leading the Government’s work in the economic recovery from the crisis caused by the pandemic. At the Fed, she stood out for paying more attention than usual in her predecessors to the mandate to promote a strong labor market, in addition to maintaining inflation, which cost her some criticism from Republicans who believed that she was overreaching.

At 74, Yellen is a highly respected figure in Washington. She has a doctorate in Economics from Yale University and has been a professor at prestigious centers such as Harvard, the London School of Economics, or Berkeley.

Director of the Council of Economic Advisers: Cecilia Rouse
Cecilia Rouse is a labor economist and dean of the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. She was a member of the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) during the Obama Administration, and the National Economic Council during the Clinton Administration. If confirmed, Rouse will be the first African-American to chair the CEA.

Foreign Trade Representative: Katherine Tai
Attorney Katherine Tai previously worked for the Office of the Foreign Trade Representative during the Obama presidency, as the chief attorney in charge of China affairs. Since Trump’s arrival in the White House, Tai was the Democrats’ chief business adviser on the House Ways and Means Committee.

She was the second Asian woman nominated by Biden for a ministerial rank position in his cabinet, after the president-elect proposed Neera Tanden as director of the Office of Management and Budget.

Director of the Council of Economic Advisers: Cecilia Rouse
Cecilia Rouse is a labor economist and dean of the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. She was a member of the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) during the Obama Administration, and the National Economic Council during the Clinton Administration. If confirmed, Rouse will be the first African-American to chair the CEA.

Foreign Trade Representative: Katherine Tai
Attorney Katherine Tai previously worked for the Office of the Foreign Trade Representative during the Obama presidency, as the chief attorney in charge of China affairs. Since Trump’s arrival in the White House, Tai was the Democrats’ chief business adviser on the House Ways and Means Committee.

She was the second Asian woman nominated by Biden for a ministerial rank position in his cabinet, after the president-elect proposed Neera Tanden as director of the Office of Management and Budget.

Head of the Small Business Administration: Isabel Guzman
The first Latina woman elected to the cabinet, Isabel Guzmán grew up in California, working alongside her father in small veterinary businesses. She is, since April 2019, the director of the Small Business Promotion Office in that state, a position for which she was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom.

Guzmán is also the founder of a business called GovContractPros, which helps small companies in the process of contracts with the federal government. During the Obama administration she held an executive position in the same department that she will now take over.

Attorney General: Merrick Garland
In 2016, Obama appointed Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court, but the Republican majority in the Senate blocked his confirmation for months in order to install a more conservative justice after that year’s election. The move shattered the dream of the meticulous federal judge, who has served the District of Columbia Court of Appeals for more than two decades. Now, Joe Biden has decided to give him a second chance, nominating him as Attorney General (equivalent to a minister of Justice) of the United States.

Garland, 68, made his debut decades ago at the Justice Department as an assistant to then-attorney general Ben Civiletti. He has assured that his priorities, if confirmed by the Senate, will be “to ensure racial equality in the justice system” and to combat “the changing threat of violent extremism.”

Justice Merrick Garland, during his nomination for the Supreme Court by Barack Obama, at the White House, in 2016. Justice Merrick Garland, during his nomination for the Supreme Court by Barack Obama, at the White House, in 2016.CHUCK KENNEDY / CASA BLANCA
Secretary of Health: Xavier Becerra
Current California attorney general, Xavier Becerra, of Mexican origin, has more than 20 years of legislative experience. He became the highest-ranking Hispanic in Congress, helped push through the passage of the Obamacare law, and led his defense in November in the Supreme Court.

If he is confirmed by the Senate, Becerra will be the first Latino to head the Department of Health and Human Services.

Xavier Becerra at the California Democratic Party convention in San Francisco in 2019 Xavier Becerra at the California Democratic Party convention in San
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development: Marcia Fudge
Marcia Fudge, 68, has been a congresswoman for Ohio in the Lower House since 2009 and was previously mayor of the city of Warrensville Heights, also in that state.

If confirmed by the Senate, the Democratic lawmaker will be the second African-American person with ministerial rank in Biden’s cabinet, alongside retired General Lloyd Austin in Defense.

Secretary of Agriculture: Tom Vilsack
Tom Vilsack, 69, was Secretary of Agriculture during the eight years of the Obama presidency. Before coming to the federal government, Vilsack was Iowa Governor, State Senator, and Mayor.

Secretary of Veterans Affairs: Denis McDonough
Denis McDonough is also an old acquaintance of Joe Biden. He served in the Obama Administration as Chief of Staff, Deputy National Security Advisor, and Chief of Staff for the National Security Council.

Secretary of Labor: Marty Walsh
Marty Walsh, current mayor of Boston, was a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives and previously a union president. During his two terms as mayor of Boston, he has focused on issues such as raising the minimum wage. He has the backing of the big unions in the country.

Biden revealed that he considered nominating Bernie Sanders, his main rival in the Democratic primaries and one of the most influential progressive figures in the United States, as Secretary of Labor. However, after noting the tight results of the Senate elections in Georgia, he decided that he couldn’t risk vacating Sanders’ seat for Vermont, and that Republicans could win it and take the reins of the Upper House from him.

Head of the Small Business Administration: Isabel Guzman
The first Latina woman elected to the cabinet, Isabel Guzman grew up in California, working alongside her father in small veterinary businesses. She is, since April 2019, the director of the Small Business Promotion Office in that state, a position for which she was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom.

Guzman is also the founder of a business called GovContractPros, which helps small companies in the process of contracts with the federal government. During the Obama administration she held an executive position in the same department that she will now take over.

Attorney General: Merrick Garland
In 2016, Obama appointed Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court, but the Republican majority in the Senate blocked his confirmation for months in order to install a more conservative justice after that year’s election. The move shattered the dream of the meticulous federal judge, who has served the District of Columbia Court of Appeals for more than two decades. Now, Joe Biden has decided to give him a second chance, nominating him as Attorney General (equivalent to a minister of Justice) of the United States.

Garland, 68, made his debut decades ago at the Justice Department as an assistant to then-attorney general Ben Civiletti. He has assured that his priorities, if confirmed by the Senate, will be “to ensure racial equality in the justice system” and to combat “the changing threat of violent extremism.”

Justice Merrick Garland, during his nomination for the Supreme Court by Barack Obama, at the White House, in 2016. Justice Merrick Garland, during his nomination for the Supreme Court by Barack Obama, at the White House, in 2016.

Secretary of Health: Xavier Becerra
Current California attorney general, Xavier Becerra, of Mexican origin, has more than 20 years of legislative experience. He became the highest-ranking Hispanic in Congress, helped push through the passage of the Obamacare law, and led his defense in November in the Supreme Court.

If he is confirmed by the Senate, Becerra will be the first Latino to head the Department of Health and Human Services.

Xavier Becerra at the California Democratic Party convention in San Francisco in 2019 Xavier Becerra at the California Democratic Party convention in San.

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development: Marcia Fudge
Marcia Fudge, 68, has been a congresswoman for Ohio in the Lower House since 2009 and was previously mayor of the city of Warrensville Heights, also in that state.

If confirmed by the Senate, the Democratic lawmaker will be the second African-American person with ministerial rank in Biden’s cabinet, alongside retired General Lloyd Austin in Defense.

Secretary of Agriculture: Tom Vilsack
Tom Vilsack, 69, was Secretary of Agriculture during the eight years of the Obama presidency. Before coming to the federal government, Vilsack was Iowa Governor, State Senator, and Mayor.

Secretary of Veterans Affairs: Denis McDonough
Denis McDonough is also an old acquaintance of Joe Biden. He served in the Obama Administration as Chief of Staff, Deputy National Security Advisor, and Chief of Staff for the National Security Council.

Secretary of Labor: Marty Walsh
Marty Walsh, current mayor of Boston, was a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives and previously a union president. During his two terms as mayor of Boston, he has focused on issues such as raising the minimum wage. He has the backing of the big unions in the country.

Biden revealed that he considered nominating Bernie Sanders, his main rival in the Democratic primaries and one of the most influential progressive figures in the United States, as Secretary of Labor. However, after noting the tight results of the Senate elections in Georgia, he decided that he couldn’t risk vacating Sanders’ seat for Vermont, and that Republicans could win it and take the reins of the Upper House from him.

Chief of Staff: Ron Klain
A lawyer and advisor to Biden for years (including the Obama administration, the Senate and the electoral campaign), Ron Klain will be the Chief of Staff of the new president, a position of great influence whose person is in charge of directing the White House on behalf of the president.

Klain, who was responsible for the White House response to the Ebola crisis in 2014, has been highly critical of the Trump administration’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic,

Ron Klain (center), during a meeting with Barack Obama at the White House, in 2014. Ron Klain (center), during a meeting with Barack Obama at the White House, in 2014.

National Security Advisor: Jake Sullivan
Jake Sullivan, 43, is shaping up to be one of the youngest National Security advisers the White House has had in decades (the second-youngest after McGeorge Bundy, who served at the age of 41 under Kennedy). .

With extensive experience abroad, he was also Biden’s national security adviser during his second term as Obama’s vice president, and deputy chief of staff to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who defined him as “a talent found once in every generation”.

Sullivan was instrumental in the negotiations that led to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

Special Presidential Envoy for Climate: John Kerry
Biden has chosen a heavyweight in American politics, John Kerry, for the new position of Special Envoy for Climate (the so-called climate czar), with whom the president-elect wants to emphasize the urgency of the fight against global warming by its Administration.

76 years old and born in Aurora (Colorado), Kerry is a former senator, former secretary of state (between 2013 and 2017, with Obama) and a former Democratic candidate for the presidency in 2004. In 2015, it was precisely he who ratified the entry of the United States. in the Paris Climate Agreement.

His appointment does not require Senate confirmation.

Director of the National Economic Council: Brian Deese
As his chief economic adviser, Biden has chosen Brian Deese, who played an important role in negotiating the Paris Agreement under the Obama administration. It’s another appointment that highlights Biden’s intention to use his economic policy to fight climate change. As in the case of Kerry, this position also does not need to be ratified by the Senate.

The 42-year-old Deese has worked for Democratic politicians for nearly two decades, first advising Kerry himself during his 2004 presidential campaign against then-President George W. Bush (2001-2009) and later working for Hillary Clinton and for the later President Barack Obama in the 2008 elections.

Press Secretary: Jen Psaki
Jen Psaki is a member of Biden’s Presidential Transition Team. She previously worked in the Obama Administration as director of communications and spokesperson for the State Department.

Psaki also worked on both Obama’s presidential campaigns and John Kerry’s 2004 presidential campaign.

Director of the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs: Julie Chavez Rodriguez
Latina Julie Chavez Rodriguez, who also worked on Biden’s election campaign team, will take over as director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs.

Chvez Rodrİguez is a California native of Mexican descent and the granddaughter of civil rights leader César Chávez. She was working on the Kamala Harris presidential campaign as a national-political director and roving chief of staff.

During the Obama Administration, she was special assistant to the president and senior deputy director of the Office of Public Participation. She has also worked in the Department of the Interior.

Julie Chavez Rodriguez, Director of the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs at the White House Julie Chávez Rodríguez CASA BLANCA
Senior Advisor to the First Lady: Anthony Bernal
The one elected to the position of Senior Advisor to the First Lady (the president’s wife, Jill Biden) Bernal was chief of staff and deputy director during the campaign and has served the Biden family for more than a decade.

A native of Arizona and a graduate of the University of Texas at El Paso, Bernal worked with President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore and has also held various positions in the private sector, including international relations at Coca-Cola.

Chief of Staff of the First Lady: Julissa Reynoso Pantaleon
Reynoso Pantaleon is a partner in a global law firm and has been appointed as Jill Biden’s chief of staff. In the Obama Administration, she served as the United States Ambassador to Uruguay and was Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Western Hemisphere.

She is originally from the Dominican Republic and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old. She grew up in the Bronx and graduated from Harvard University, Cambridge University, and Columbia Law School.

Deputy Secretary for Health and Human Services: Rachel Levine
The one chosen to occupy the Deputy Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services has been Dr. Rachel Levine, who would be the first openly transgender person to hold a position at this federal level if she receives the support of the Senate.

Until now, she was Pennsylvania Secretary of Health and one of those responsible for managing the pandemic in the state; she positions that, according to President-elect Joe Biden, she has achieved by demonstrating deep experience and being an effective public servant.

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