The first 100 days of 46th president Joe Biden’s presidency have nearly passed. Biden will officially have been president for 100 days on April 30. The president has promised bold initiatives such as tackling climate change, coronavirus relief, and immigration reform. According to AP News, as of Biden’s 93rd day in office, he has upheld 23 of his 61 promises. Let’s take a deeper look at what he has accomplished so far and what it means for the country.
Biden made climate change and environmental action a key part of his platform. On Inauguration Day, Biden signed an executive order that revoked the Keystone XL oil pipeline’s permit. The pipeline has been widely protested by indigenous peoples and allies, as the pipeline would have cut through thousands of acres of indigenous land in the Midwest, and severely harm the surrounding environment. A lesser-known issue that is impacted by the order is MMIW, or “missing and/or murdered indigenous women”. In the United States and Canada, indigenous women have a dangerously high rate of being kidnapped, murdered, or both. Thousands of women go missing every year, and few are ever found. The pipeline worker’s living quarters would have been on indigenous land as well, which poses a threat to the indigenous women of the area. The revoking of the permit will greatly benefit the environment, and also keep our indigenous women safe. Biden has also re-entered the United States in the Paris Climate Accord, which former president Donald Trump notoriously extracted the country from. By doing so, the United States will work with other countries in the agreement to find a global strategy to fight climate change.
Biden recently announced his American Rescue Plan, which according to the White House website will provide “Emergency Legislative Package to Fund Vaccinations, Provide Immediate, Direct Relief to Families Bearing the Brunt of the COVID-19 Crisis, and Support Struggling Communities”. To elaborate, Biden plans to contain the virus by instituting a national vaccine program and to safely reopen schools. His goal is to have 150 million vaccines be administered before the end of his first 100 days. Congress did pass a large COVID-19 relief bill, which provided another round of stimulus checks to people across the country. Biden also plans to support communities that have been struck especially hard by the pandemic by providing aid to small businesses and protecting essential workers.
One of the numerous executive actions Biden signed on Inauguration Day was to end the Muslim Ban that had been enforced during the Trump Administration. The ban heavily restricted immigration from foreign nations that were predominately Muslim, highly reminiscent of the administration’s xenophobic, islamophobic, and isolationist values. Biden has also sent Congress legislation that would help to create a path to citizenship for 11 million immigrants and protect people who immigrated illegally as children. Congress introduced the plan on February 18. He has also reinstated deportation criteria that seek to deport foreigners only if they are seen as a threat to national security, or have committed additional crimes. Finally, Biden has taken measures to reunite separated families, stop deportations of certain groups, and halted the construction of the infamous border wall.
On January 20, Biden declared that masks and social distancing protocols were required on federal property, and on the same day, the administration notified the Secretary-General of the United Nations of the United State’s intent to rejoin the World Health Organization (WHO). The Trump Administration had withdrawn the United States from the WHO.
Domestic Policy & Economy
In addition to providing aid to those affected by the pandemic, Biden has extended a pause on student loan payments. He has also put a pause on evictions and foreclosures. He has also asked that federal departments brainstorm actions to ease the economic crisis that has emerged as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Biden signed Executive Order 14017 on February 24, which has ordered an evaluation of supply chain vulnerabilities in specific U.S. sectors.
Biden has also taken action to reform the government. On January 20, he signed an executive order that created an ethics pledge for activities relating to lobbying and gift receiving. To further prevent corruption, he created another ethics pledge that would prevent political interference in the Justice Department. Biden has also reinstated measures to protect federal employees’ right to unionize.
So far, Biden has made noticeable strides in order to achieve his promises to America. His progress shows that he is dedicating to improving not only life in America but maintaining healthy relations abroad. Let’s hope that he continues to fight for a better future for us all.
Junior Olivia Post is a co-editor for the 2020-2021 Colonel. She is a member of the music program and the track team. In her free time, Olivia can be found reading or obsessively aligning photos on yearbook spreads.