Joe Biden made a lot of promises on the campaign trail and a memo from his chief of staff indicates he is ready to fulfill them.
Through executive order, on day one, Biden intends to re-join the Paris climate accord, end the travel ban, issue a mask mandate on federal property and order a halt to evictions and student loan payments during the pandemic.
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“A first day agenda of a new administration that follows Donald Trump must be ambitious because there was so much harm that needs to be undone,” Democratic Analyst Jesse Mermell said.
Mermell and other Democratic activists are watching to make sure Biden follows through with some of the boldest proposals.
“Those of us who are in the progressive movement are going to have to work to hold the Biden administration accountable to go harder and faster and further," Mermell said.
Michael Graham of the New Hampshire Journal says he knows Biden needs to satisfy the base, but he is surprised that with the pandemic such an obvious and unifying crisis that Biden would be talking about divisive issues like ending the keystone pipeline.
“What’s thrown me off is the number of, to me, unnecessary fights that he’s picking," Graham said.
Graham thinks Biden’s legislative priority of immigration reform is a misstep.
If it was too tough for the glory days of the Obama administration, Graham says, why in the world would you go there now?
Mermell says she's uninterested in those worried about an overreach.
“Republicans who stayed silent while kids were in cages, Republicans who stayed silent while Black people were killed by police. I am uninterested in what they have to say about overreach,” Mermell said.
Democrats are also focused on process, many calling on Biden to support eliminating the filibuster.
Look for conservative Democrats like Sen. Joe Manchin and moderate Republicans like Sen. Lisa Murkowski to play pivotal rules in the upcoming congressional session.