9 months ago

Sen. Cory Booker: Biden ‘appealed to the better angels of our nature’

Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J, told Judy Woodruff that President Biden’s inaugural address felt like the first step toward healing after the Capitol riot. Booker said colleagues he spoke to from both parties “felt such a deep sense of hurt from Jan. 6, and this was for many of us the beginning of healing and the rekindling of hope… Somehow we can bring an end to what he called the ‘uncivil war.’”

9 months ago

President Joe Biden’s team has started moving into the White House.

The building began humming again with activity a few hours after Biden’s inauguration Wednesday as staff for the new president started moving into their offices, unpacking belongings and getting the badges that grant them easy access to the property.

New press secretary Jen Psaki tweeted that she was “in the building and ready to get to work.” Psaki has scheduled the new administration’s first White House press briefing for later Wednesday.

Biden plans to sign a flurry of executive orders, some overturning actions by former President Donald Trump, once he gets to the Oval Office.

The White House had been largely emptied out of staff after Trump flew to Florida on Wednesday morning, skipping his successor’s swearing-in.

9 months ago

Partisan politics will pose legislative hurdles for Biden

With an historic pandemic, economic crises, climate change and more confronting the country, President Joe Biden will need to respond quickly and boldly, said Amy Walter of the Cook Political Report. Unless at least nine or 10 Republican senators agree to work with his administration to pass sweeping legislation, Biden will likely sign “as much if not more” executive orders than Presidents Donald Trump or Barack Obama and will have one or two chances to use reconciliation. “I would not look for big, sweeping legislation to make its way across the president’s desk,” Walter told Judy Woodruff.

9 months ago

In new policy, all visitors to White House grounds will be tested for COVID-19

Yamiche Alcindor, who reports the new policy, had her first test at the White House today, and she reports that crews there are on their hands and knees scrubbing the floors and walls to prepare for the new administration. The change signifies an immediate shift from Trump’s policies, often criticized for failing to take the virus seriously. “They’re trying to get the germs — and maybe some of the ideals — out of those rooms,” she said.

9 months ago

The presidential motorcade is on its way to Arlington National Cemetery

In one of his first official acts as president, Joe Biden will lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery. The solemn tradition, meant to honor all U.S. service members who have died in the line of duty, comes at a moment of national grief after the death of more than 400,000 Americans to COVID-19 in less than one year. Biden is joined by three of the five living former presidents: Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

9 months ago

President reviews readiness of military troops

Pass in Review, occurring on the Capitol’s East Front, is a military tradition in which the incoming president reviews the readiness of military troops, in a demonstration with every branch of the military represented.

9 months ago

What do Americans want to see from Biden’s COVID-19 response?

Biden has pledged to mandate face masks nationwide as one of 17 executive actions on his first day in office. Nearly three-quarters of Americans support such a measure, according to the latest PBS NewsHour/NPR/Marist poll. Roughly half of Americans — 48 percent — say coronavirus vaccine distribution should be the Biden administration’s top priority, and a quarter of Americans say the incoming administration should prioritize financial relief for small businesses above all else. Direct payments to individuals ranked as the third most-popular priority, a move for which Biden would need Congressional support.

9 months ago

Biden signs first official documents as president

Immediately after his inauguration, President Joe Biden signed three documents containing an Inauguration Day proclamation along with his nominations to Cabinet and sub-Cabinet positions, according to reporters present for the event. For each signature, he used a different pen and repeatedly thanked all in attendance. Vice President Kamala Harris stood nearby.

9 months ago

Jayapal: Harris is ready to lead on key Democratic issues

Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., told Judy Wooodruff that she believes Vice President Harris brings the necessary experience to push through key Democratic legislation, including immigration and racial justice reform.

“Kamala Harris understands both the opportunity that Joe Biden spoke about today, the possibility and the need to seize light, but also the darkness of our country as we have strived to be that country that we idealize,” the congresswoman said.

9 months ago

Rep. Clyburn says Biden administration will make strides on the pandemic

House Majority Whip Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., who was crucial to the nomination of Joe Biden in the 2020 Democratic primaries, tells the PBS NewsHour that Biden’s modeling of behaviors like wearing a mask and keeping social distance will go a long way to help the American effort to defeat the pandemic, which has killed more than 400,000 people in the U.S. “When you get a president in place that will lead by example, that in and of itself will set a tone,” he said.