Time for America to unite, to heal

Biden is “honored and humbled”

Ishwar Dev Khanal

November 8, 2020

6 MIN READ

Time for America to unite, to heal

President-elect Joe Biden says he will heal the nation after four years of tumult. (Photo: Reuters)

  • 11
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    11
    Shares

KATHMANDU: The high-drama presidential election in the United States of America comes to an end with the election of Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential candidate, as the country’s 46th President.

The world’s most powerful nation was exhausted – both mentally and emotionally – and finally elected Biden who quickly took to social media to say that he was “honored and humbled” to be elected.

A record number of the people of America voted. That’s why President-elect Biden said: “Democracy beats deep in the heart of America.”

A calm Biden said it was now time to “put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation”.

“It’s time for America to unite. And to heal,” said the President-elect who had campaigned on the commitment to address the problems that he said President Trump had made worse.

Biden had put-forth detailed plans for green new jobs, education, as well as expanding Obamacare.

However, his past experience as the Vice President and Head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is sure to give him an acquaintance with international affairs that could definitely work to Biden’s advantage.

He is, however, sure to face some tough challenges – including the spiraling COVID-19 cases along with the climate change to the battered economy as well as a divided society — after he takes the oath in January next year.

Coronavirus cases have spiraled in the United States to new highs, despite Trump’s claims that his administration had “turned the corner”.

As many as 10 million people have already contracted the virus and more than 230,000 have died, according to the New York Times.

Meanwhile, during his term as the Vice President in 2008 and 2012, Biden had overseen the infrastructure spending in a bid to control the recession.

Biden’s diplomatic negotiations with the congressional Republicans also supported pass legislation such as the 2010 Tax Relief Act and the Budget Control Act of 2011.

Biden had also endeavored to pass the United States-Russia New START treaty as well as supported in formulating the US foreign policy towards Iraq by facilitating the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq in 2011.

However, with this win, Biden will inherit a load of challenges and even could face hindrances in dealing with countries that had hoped for Trump’s re-election – mainly Saudi Arabia and Israel.

However, his past experience as the Vice President and Head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is sure to give him an acquaintance with international affairs that could definitely work to Biden’s advantage.

Biden had also pledged to listen to science, and ensure that public health decisions are informed by public health professionals.

He is also likely to face a task in righting the ship when it comes to the country’s economy that has been ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic.

As millions have lost their jobs, and the unemployment rate has increased, it will be a challenge for Biden whether he will be able to build back better to create jobs as promised.

Another challenge for him is the urgent calls for action on climate change as the US under the Trump administration has withdrawn from the Paris Agreement, prompting wide criticism from the international community.

Meanwhile, North Korea will be an enormous burden for Biden which Trump failed to persuade North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to relinquish missiles and nuclear weapons.

Another test for Biden could be his dealing with America’s geopolitical rival China as observers say whether he would reverse the downward trajectory of relations with Beijing or move ahead with Trump’s spirit as there are disputes over the South China Sea, trade, Taiwan, Hong Kong, technology, and the latest being the COVID-19 pandemic, which Trump popularly called the “China-virus”.

Meanwhile, another challenge for Biden is to realize his pledge to reverse what he termed the “dangerous failure” of Trump’s Iran policy that retracted the 2015 nuclear agreement by replacing it with strict sanctions that left America isolated on the issue.

He faces another challenge that he had pledged to nullify Trump’s travel ban affecting Muslim-majority countries, including Iran.

Likewise, since Biden had earlier opposed Brexit, his presidency is also likely to prove cumbersome for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has had good relations with Trump and had been weighing on achieving a trade deal with America before Britain exits from the EU.

Meanwhile, North Korea will be an enormous burden for Biden which Trump failed to persuade North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to relinquish missiles and nuclear weapons.

Since this legacy has been transferred to Biden, dealing with the North is sure to be a burden for him.

Russia is another country that Biden has earlier asserted of taking a harder line than Trump. He as the Vice President had pushed for sanctions against Russia over its annexation of the Crimean peninsula in 2014.

Just In