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4 Things to Watch with the Biden-Harris administration

With a new, more diverse Biden-Harris administration now in The White House, along with the Democrats controlling the House of Representatives and Senate policies made by Donald Trump can more easily be undone and the fight for racial and social justice can hopefully be easier.

No president is going to perfectly execute what they ran on–plans change due to them having to try and find common ground to get legislation to pass.

While some legislation should not be compromised, the Dem-trifecta is the perfect opportunity to provide relief to the everyday Americans who are struggling to get by and survive due to the impacts caused by the pandemic, help bring racial and social justice to the forefront since the racial divide in our country has been made worse over the past four years. 

Stimulus checks

With the US entering a year of the COVID-19, the government has only provided two stimulus checks to help the American people. One in the summer that was $1,200 and one in the late fall that was about $600. Neither stimulus check can be stretched out over the entire pandemic. People have bills to pay, families or themself to feed, rent due, groceries to get, gas for your car, or money to take public transportation. 

Biden ran on the notion that he would put more money in the hands of the average, working day American citizen to help relieve some of the financial burden caused by the pandemic. So far, he has proposed a $1,400 per person, $2,800 per couple payment yet it still needs to make its way through Congress in order to be passed.

But American citizens need money ASAP and should have been supported monthly to help them deal with the financial impact caused by the pandemic. 

Racial equity 

America has a systematic racism issue along with a race issue in general. The divide has always been there and while it should be our politician's job to help close the divide by leading through example and action yet members of our Congress and former administration made the divide deeper. 

Biden so far has signed four executive orders to help advance racial equity. He has signed executive actions that: 

-directs the Department of Housing and Urban Development to take the necessary steps to redress racially, discriminatory federal housing policies 

-directs the Department of Justice to end the use of private prisons

-reaffirming the federal government's commitment to Native American 

-to combat xenophobia against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders 

Biden has also called for resigning and extending the Voting Rights Act but has yet to make any new initiatives regarding ballot access. 

But the racial divide in this country needs to be addressed in a more aggressive and progressive way. Our politicians set the tone of dealing with problems in our country and when we have lawmakers and a President inciting violence, further oppressing Black people and feeling as if they are the oppressed need to be removed. 

The racial divide has gone on long enough and our country needs a leader who can take action and lead by example. 

COVID-19 Vaccine Plan 

Biden has made it one of his top priorities of having a proper COVID-19 plan in place. For starters, he has a team of doctors along with our nation's top infectious disease doctor Dr. Fauci giving an update and presenting the facts regarding COVID and when we could hopefully and slowly begin to start the return to normal life again. 

Biden has also made it a mandate that masks be worn inside buildings and on land controlled by the federal government. 

He also has taken steps to improve the country's COVID-19 vaccine plan. Biden's administration plans on increasing the weekly shipments of vaccines to 10 million doses to help states plan out vaccine plans a month in advance. 

Biden also purchased 200 million additional doses of both vaccines to help get most if not all Americans vaccinated by the end of summer. 


Climate Change 

Biden's climate plan not only wants to help make our Earth more sustainable for future generations to come, but it also focuses on helping expand economic and social justice.  

Biden wants to have clean energy jobs at the front and center. Similar to the Green New Deal that was introduced by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Ed Markey, clean energy jobs would help create about 10 million new jobs. 

Biden's climate response needs to be aggressive and progressive that address the environmental racism that has displaced oppressed groups and making it harder for them to get basic necessities such as groceries, he needs to work with states to get them to push earth-friendly legislation and overall have an aggressive approach to combatting Climate Change. 

Grace Kinnicutt

Illinois State '21

Senior at Illinois State University majoring in Journalism with a minor in Political Science.
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