Jan 17, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Biden's "overwhelming force" doctrine

Mike Allen
Biden puts on a face mask

President-elect Biden arrives to introduce his science team in Wilmington yesterday. Photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

President-elect Biden has ordered up a shock-and-awe campaign for his first days in office to signal, as dramatically as possible, the radical shift coming to America and global affairs, his advisers tell us. 

The plan, Part 1 ... Biden, as detailed in a "First Ten Days" memo from incoming chief of staff Ron Klain, plans to unleash executive orders, federal powers and speeches to shift to a stark, national plan for "100 million shots" in three months.

  • A federal mask mandate on government property and for interstate travel — Biden's "100 Day Masking Challenge."
  • Expand neighborhood access by activating local pharmacies, working directly with both independent drugstores and massive chains.
  • Reimburse states for deploying the National Guard to support vaccinations, and provide additional FEMA assistance.

The plan, Part 2 ... Biden plans a $2 trillion stimulus/coronavirus plan plus the following executive orders to symbolize and solidify a substantial shift here and abroad:

  • Rescind the travel ban on several predominantly Muslim countries.
  • Rejoin the Paris climate accord.
  • Extend pandemic-related limits on evictions.
  • Order federal agencies to find ways to reunite children split apart from their families after crossing the border.

The big picture: Watch for Biden to wrap everything, even tangential ideological priorities, under the banner of the coronavirus, in hopes of speeding up legislative action and picking up some Republican votes.

  • Biden privately says he has a small window to get the vaccination rollout right and the economy recovering. Otherwise, he'll fall victim to liberals who find his actions too timid, and Republicans who find them too liberal. 
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