What Biden Has Done So Far To Undo Trump’s Policies
Within the first few hours of Joe Biden’s presidency, he signed 17 executive orders to reverse Trump administration policies. The new President ordered changes in immigration policies, climate change, and handling of the pandemic. "There is no time to waste when it comes to tackling the crisis we face," President Biden tweeted as he headed to the White House following his inauguration.
Throughout Trump’s presidency, he tried to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that protects immigrants brought to the United States as children from deportation, also known as Dreamers. With an executive order, Biden reaffirmed DACA and worked on providing a path to citizenship for those immigrants.
In addition, Biden signed an executive order to include noncitizens in the census count. Trump’s aggressive efforts to find and deport unauthorized immigrants are being worked on to be reversed, and another order was signed to block the deportation of Liberians who have been living in the United States. The so-called Muslim ban, which blocked travel to the United States from several predominantly Muslim and African countries, ended under Biden’s order. The State Department was told to restart visa processing and to develop ways to compensate for the harm caused bythe ban.
The construction of Trump’s border wall with Mexico is being halted. The order includes an “immediate termination” of the national emergency declaration that allowed the Trump administration to utilize billions of tax money for the wall. Biden vowed to “protect national and border security” and “address the humanitarian challenges at the southern border.” The legality of the funding of the wall using federal money is also being brought into question.
Earth’s climate crisis has grown to become an ongoing, prominent issue. In order to protect our future, this crisis must be addressed now. In an effort to tackle the issue of climate change, President Biden has signed a letter to re-enter the United States in the Paris climate agreement— an international pact aimed at curbing emissions that cause global warming. Biden also began to reverse many harmful environmental policies the Trump administration implemented, including:
revoking the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline
reversing the rollbacks to vehicle emissions standards
undoing decisions to slash the size of several national monuments
enforcing a temporary moratorium on oil and natural gas leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
re-establishing a working group on the social costs of greenhouse gasses.
Racial and LGBTQ equality
The Black Lives Matter movement has changed how the world talks about race. This movement has come to define a generation and acts as a force of change. With the attention that this movement has brought on, racial and LGBTQ equity was a heated topic of the 2020 election. Already, President Joe Biden is working to create a more diversified and equal federal agency.
Biden ordered federal agencies to conduct equity assessments and reallocate resources to “advanc[e] equity for all, including people of color and others who have been historically underserved, marginalized and adversely affected by persistent poverty and inequality.” Susan E. Rice, who is the head of his Domestic Policy Council, was appointed by the president to lead this effort in rooting out systemic racism within federal agencies. His order directs the agencies to review and report on equity in their ranks within 200 days, including a plan on how to remove barriers to opportunities in policies and programs. The order also moves to ensure that Americans of all backgrounds have equal access to federal government resources, benefits, and services.
Joe Biden will end the Trump administration’s 1776 Commission, which released a report on Monday that historians said distorted the role of slavery in the United States. Another executive order reinforces Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to require that the federal government does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, a policy that reverses action by Trump’s administration.
Biden is moving to extend a federal temporary suspension on evictions. He has asked the Agriculture, Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development Departments, to extend federally guaranteed mortgages that were enacted in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The extensions all run through at least the end of March.
The president is also moving to continue a pause on federal student loan interest and principal payments through the end of September, although progressive groups and some congressional Democrats have pushed Mr. Biden to go much further and cancel up to $50,000 in student debt per person.
The Covid-19 Pandemic
President Biden has signed an executive order appointing Jeffrey D. Zients as the official Covid-19 response coordinator. The order also restores the directorate for global health security and biodefense at the National Security Council, a group Mr. Trump had disbanded.
Biden is also requiring social distancing and the wearing of masks on all federal property and by all federal employees. While the president lacks the authority to institute a nationwide mask mandate, the order also “encourages masking across America.” He will begin to attempt to start a “100 days masking challenge” that urges all Americans to wear masks, social distance, and stay home. State and local officials are expected to enforce covid-safety protocols in public to prevent the spread of the virus.
Biden is working to rebuild ties with the World Health Organization after the Trump administration chose to withdraw America from the organization last year. Dr. Anthony S. Fauci will be the head of the U.S. delegation to the organization’s executive board.
As the year 2021 begins, the Democrats start off in control of the House of Representatives and Senate. President Biden will have a lot of issues to tackle in the years of his presidency, but this also opens a window for accomplishments and a better America. The win over Donald Trump is only the very beginning. Biden calls for unity—it won't be easy.