Saturday, March 2

Alone in the face of danger


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In the history of failed US Presidencies, those that end with a single term, there are occupants of the Oval Office who are overwhelmed by circumstances and their terrible management. Others end up being victims of failing to meet the enormous expectations that they themselves generated. Taking stock of his first year in the White House, Joe Biden seems to fall into that second category by not demonstrating the effectiveness he promised when he was elected in 2020 by a margin of victory of more than 7 million votes over Donald Trump.

Upon taking office – 14 days after the assault on Capitol Hill – Joe Biden started strong, promoting the massive vaccination campaign against Covid and a

additional package against the devastating economic effects of the pandemic. Those early successes led the Biden Administration to brag about a lot. It was about saving American democracy by demonstrating the proper functioning of its economy and its politics.

However, the bombast has degenerated into loneliness and frustration. It is not very common for a US president to simultaneously confront the Republicans, their more moderate co-religionists and also those further to the left. That political helplessness contrasts with the hype about a new leadership in Washington that should not be interpreted as a third term for Obama. Which in the jargon of the capital does not mean anything other than an ambitious agenda without centrist concessions.

In this spiral of tribulations starring Biden, a couple of senators from his own party have derailed his most decisive legislative projects. Despite his decades in the Senate, he has been unable to reach any agreement with the opposition. The Supreme has blocked his management of a pandemic impossible to control with 30% of adults who reject vaccines. Inflation is destroying the economic recovery. And the chaotic exit from Afghanistan has been interpreted as a dangerous sign of extreme weakness.

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