Nov 10, 2020 - Technology

Business looks ahead to Biden administration

A photo of Joe Biden standing at a lectern to give an address, with "Office of the President Elect" in large lettering behind him

Photo: Joe Raedle via Getty Images

Tech firms and business groups are reaching out to the Biden camp and preparing for life under a new administration, even as many Republicans refuse to acknowledge President Trump's loss, gumming up the Biden team's formal transition.

Why it matters: Trump and those in his orbit are refusing to give up on the idea that he will get a second term, but the rest of the world is looking to January and a Biden administration, make sure their priorities are known.

  • The moves also help add institutional support to the election results, even as President Trump and others refuse to recognize the outcome, asserting — without evidence — claims of fraud.

The big picture: Dozens of businesses have congratulated President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on their win and are laying out legislative and policy priorities.

  • "Our view is that it's important to plan ahead, perhaps now more than ever, given the crisis that the country is facing," Christopher Padilla, a Bush administration alum and head of government affairs for IBM, told reporters on a call Tuesday.
  • "It's very, very important for the good of the country that we come together and unify and get on with the business of tackling the pandemic," he said. "The election was hard fought. But the result is clear."

What they're saying: Business Roundtable and the Chamber of Commerce both congratulated Biden and urged the importance of working together on pandemic relief.

  • Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins, in congratulating Biden, said the company looks forward to focusing on the digital divide and how tech can help fight the coronavirus pandemic alongside the new administration.
  • Microsoft, along with tech trade groups the Information Technology and Industry Council, TechNet, the Business Software Alliance and others congratulated Biden and outlined policy priorities for their administration, including delivering federal legislation to create uniform data privacy policies for the whole country, rather than a series of state laws.

What's next: "There's no doubt that we're going to face a very, very difficult few months ahead here with the coronavirus. So the sooner the better in terms of getting the transition going and getting plans made for what comes next. I think that would probably be a very widely held view in the business community," Padilla said.

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