Seasons Greetings

Flash News: Afghans who risked lives to help American troops set to arrive in US      - | -     Are Covid boosters needed? Some nursing home residents to have immunity checked      - | -     How Biden’s sherpa, Steve Ricchetti, scored the big deal      - | -     'Frightening' Covid surge widens Japan's emergency      - | -     The US see rise in Covid cases; Delta variant feared as most contagious and dangerous strain      - | -     A man was charged with hate crimes for attacks on Muslims in New York City      - | -     Outrage grows after Deputies beat native American man, kill his dog      - | -     Beijing reports first Covid case in 179 days as alarm grows over Nanjing Delta cluster      - | -     Is Houston seeing a mirror image of last year's COVID summer surge?      - | -     Apple says chip shortage reaches iPhone, growth forecast slows      - | -     Two dead after leak at Texas chemical plant      - | -     Can Biden's plans manufacture more US factory jobs?      - | -     House begins Capitol attack inquiry as Republicans set to boycott proceedings      - | -     Barbara Boxer: Former California senator is a victim of assault and theft      - | -     The US could see 200,000 Covid-19 cases a day within the next six weeks: Former CDC director      - | -     Five die as Indian policemen fire at each other      - | -     Officials warn of ‘race’ against Delta variant as US cases surge      - | -     Why experts recommend upgrading to N95 masks to help fight the delta variant      - | -     Utah I-15 crash: 7 people are dead and several more injured in multiple crashes      - | -     Landmark Vatican fraud trial of 10 including a cardinal set to start      - | -     Afghan interpreter for US Army was beheaded by Taliban after US withdrawal from Afghanistan      - | -     New York becomes sixth state in U.S. to ban child marriages      - | -     12-year-old Oklahoma boy found dead after participating in TikTok 'blackout challenge,' reports say      - | -     French citizen among six arrested over plan to kill Madagascar president -minister      - | -     Young people falling very sick with Covid-19 should be 'a gigantic wakeup call,' Alabama doctor says      - | -     Texas Gov. Greg Abbott says he won't impose new mask mandate despite increasing COVID-19 cases      - | -     Gun that killed U.S. outlaw Billy the Kid to be sold      - | -     'Pingdemic' grips Britain as fears of food shortages grow      - | -     Capitol attack committee chair vows to investigate Trump      - | -     Biden's crisis presidency will only get harder as it passes the six-month mark      - | -     China's flood-hit Henan to get nearly $300 million in emergency aid, donations      - | -     Blue butterflies was the first to go extinct in the US because of humans      - | -     Kentucky Governor pushes for masks after fully-vaccinated lawmakers catch Covid amid Delta surge      - | -     New chief selected for Capitol Police after 1/6 insurrection      - | -     Canada extends ban on direct flights from India over fear of Covid-19 Delta variant      - | -     Hackers steal “a Terabyte of data” from oil giant Saudi Aramco      - | -     Now it's Jeff Bezos' turn to make history with flight into space      - | -     Man faces 1st sentencing for felony in riot at US Capitol      - | -     Trump says Americans are refusing to get vaccine because of Biden      - | -     US firms in Hong Kong face risks, says AmCham      - | -     Covid-19 pandemic 'is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated,' CDC director says      - | -     Father and son police officers charged with joining Proud Boys at Capitol riot      - | -     What the Stars wore to the 2021 Cannes Film Festival      - | -     Olympics-First COVID case found at athletes' village, stoking fears ahead of Games      - | -     Los Angeles County to reinstate mask mandate amid rise in Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations      - | -     Condo collapse: The search of the Surfside rubble won't stop until every person is found, official says      - | -     More than 200,000 acres burned in Oregon's massive Bootleg fire      - | -     Coronavirus delta variant: What you should know      - | -     Los Angeles beaches reopen almost three days after 17 million gallons of sewage spill into Santa Monica Bay      - | -     Florida Democrats ask for 'Clarity' on 'Anti-Riot' Law after Cuba Protesters not arrested      - | -     Biden pitches huge budget, says Dems will 'get a lot done'      - | -     U.S. Senate passes bill to ban all products from China's Xinjiang      - | -     Cuba, Haiti stir fresh political pressures for US president      - | -     Lin Wood may face punishment after sharing clip of Michigan election sanctions hearing      - | -     Billions and counting: Biggest fines slapped against Google in recent years      - | -     Japan warns of Taiwan crisis, growing risks from US-China rivalry      - | -     Death toll in Surfside, Florida, reaches 94      - | -     After Condo collapse, hotel falls in China's Jiangsu province kills eight      - | -     A 'moral' fight: Biden to urge Americans to challenge efforts to restrict voting rights      - | -     65 people dead by lightning strikes and thunderstorms in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh      - | -     India celebrates woman who flew on Virgin Galactic      - | -     Infections rise in 42 states; Fauci says it's 'horrifying' to see people cheer lack of vaccinations: COVID-19 updates      - | -     Listen up: Biden speaks volumes in a whisper to make a point      - | -     Haitian doctor with Florida connections arrested in Jovenel Moïse assassination plot      - | -     “Do I trust the Taliban? No," Biden “But I trust the capacity of the Afghan military, who is better trained, Biden sets Aug. 31 for US exit from Afghanistan      - | -     Michigan attorney general to investigate 2020 election fraud profiteers      - | -     New review of potential SARS-CoV-2 origins. Here's what experts think      - | -     Rani 'World's smallest cow' could be a huge public health risk      - | -     Delta variant is 'Covid-19 on steroids,' expert says, with cases increasing in nearly half of US states      - | -     Arizona's top elections official probe on Trump over 'intense efforts to interfere' with ballot counting      - | -     Google hit with Antitrust Lawsuit brought by 36 States and Washington, D.C.      - | -     Social Media major Twitter appoints India compliance executive to comply new IT laws      - | -     Here goes Trump again! tells chief of staff “Hitler did a lot of good things”     - | -     LAPD employee who shared a George Floyd Valentine's Day-themed image is cleared of wrongdoing     - | -     Legendary actor Dilip Kumar dies at 98, leaves a void in Indian cinema     - | -     Biden administration to host Modi, other Quad leaders this year     - | -     Miami-Dade mayor becomes face of response to condo collapse      - | -     Up to 1,500 firms affected in major ransomware attack, Kaseya says      - | -     Where did watermelons come from?      - | -     India’s billionaires Ambani, Adani gets richer while coronavirus pushes millions into abject poverty      - | -     Dr. Fauci cautions on Covid-19 'spikes,' pleads with anti-vaxxers as Biden misses 70% vaccination Goal      - | -     Explosives set off to bring down rest of collapsed condo      - | -     Is iOS 14.6 draining people's iPhone batteries? Here's an easy fix      - | -     Pakistan blames India of June bomb blast in Lahore      - | -     July 4th weekend, Hurricane Elsa, Trump's Florida rally      - | -     Google to introduce HTTPS-only mode to Chrome      - | -     Afghan pullout has US spies reorienting in terrorism fight      - | -     Boozy beasts: Visiting Comet 46P/Wirtanen Is 'Abnormally High' in Alcohol      - | -     UAE bans citizens from travelling to india, pakistan and other countries      - | -     Johnson & Johnson says its single-shot COVID-19 vaccine offers durable protection against Delta, other variants      - | -     US expresses concern over China's nuclear arms buildup      - | -     Reported bomb threat at Luke Air Force Base as Arizona police investigate      - | -     At Least 63 People Died During Record Temperatures in Oregon Heat Wave      - | -     Houston Shooting Sees One Child and Two Adults Killed, Suspect at Large      - | -     Cuomo Reaps $1 Million at NYC Fundraiser Under Scandal’s Cloud      - | -     SpaceX launches 88 spacecraft into orbit — including two of Spaceflight’s orbital tugs      - | -     Trump in financial and political danger as company faces possible criminal charges      - | -     Surfside Condo Collapse: What We Know      - | -     WHO recommends wearing masks even for fully vaccinated?      - | -     3,000-year-old skeleton missing a hand and a leg is world's oldest shark attack victim      - | -     Miami-Dade building collapse leaves 9 dead and more than 100 missing      - | -     China's aggressive behavior on the global stage is an 'immense danger,' says analyst      - | -     One of his former executives says Trump 'deserves to go to jail' ahead of New York prosecutors potentially filing criminal charges      - | -     Wikipedia is at war over the coronavirus lab leak theory      - | -     Fit both Homo sapiens, Neanderthal yet neither - A previously unknown type of ancient human has been discovered in the Levant     - | -     Rep. Bob Good apparently called ‘racist’ as he questioned Biden official on critical race theory     - | -     'Brutal' third wave hits Africa as vaccination slows     - | -     Almost all COVID 19 deaths in US now among unvaccinated as per government data     - | -     Trump and the Republicans deserve credit for the coronavirus vaccine      - | -     Biden removes FHFA director after Supreme Court ruling      - | -     Western drought brings another woe: voracious grasshoppers      - | -     Merkel: Europe 'on thin ice' amid delta virus variant rise      - | -     Tulsa, Oklahoma, cyberattack: Officials warn personal information may have been leaked to the dark web      - | -     Delta variant: What it could mean for Covid-19 in the US      - | -     Tentacles of Manhattan DA's Trump probe reach former bodyguard Calamari      - | -     Is India's Delta Plus a worrying Covid-19 variant?      - | -     'Harder than Everest': record-breaking female climber stranded in Nepal amid COVID crisis      - | -     Bitcoin, Dogecoin and Ethereum are crashing, What’s the reason? China again?      - | -     Trump firm sues New York to regain control of Bronx golf course      - | -     Two employees dead as virus sweeps Manatee County government building in Florida      - | -     Alabama highway crash – a national tragedy, young victims were traveling home from beach trip when heartbreak incident take place      - | -     White House says comments by N.Korea's Kim are 'interesting signal'      - | -     Why India's outbreak is a threat to the world     - | -     Suspected smuggling boat tragedy in San Diego adds to Biden's migrant crisis woes     - | -     Maryland votes to nix state song, a Confederate call to arms     - | -     Kim Janey rewrites history, Boston's first Black and female mayor     - | -     Gunman kills 10 at Colorado supermarket in second US mass shooting in a week     - | -     Kamala Harris laughs when asked if she will visit the border raises sharp criticism online     - | -     Roger Stone under fresh scrutiny as Capitol attack investigation intensifies     - | -     Vaccines will likely not be mandatory for teachers: Biden’s Education Secretary     - | -     Fauci warns about potential for an oncoming resurgence of virus if restrictions eased     - | -     Biden plug relief to Americans, celebrates 'transformational' victory on COVID-19 relief     - | -     LA Schools to Reopen in mid-April & NY City will open high schools next week     - | -     Women are tired of explaining to men like Andrew Cuomo why sexual harassment is wrong     - | -     Biden signs orders on gender equity, nominates two women to be four-star commanders     - | -     Nation takes baby steps to normality after year in lockdown; "The virus isn't going to go away," says Harvard epidemiologist     - | -     Rumours of vaccine site giving jabs to anyone because of low demand. Hundreds lined up     - | -     Vaccine supply will "dramatically" increase in weeks ahead: Fauci     - | -     Biden calls it "Neanderthal thinking" slams Texas and Mississippi's decisions to lift COVID-19 mask mandates     - | -     This Is What GOP Feared. Now that Trump Has Governed with Executive Orders, Dems Plan to Do Same      - | -     Man Throwing 'Incendiary Devices' at ICE Detention Center Is Killed in Attack      - | -     Mueller Hearing Pushed Back a Week to Allow More Time for Him to Answer Questions      - | -     Trump Tells 4 Congresswomen of Color to 'Go Back' to 'Crime-Infested' Countries They Came From      - | -     GOP Congressman Invokes 'The Deep State'

National News

Biden's crisis presidency will only get harder as it passes the six-month mark

viewsViews 192

Biden's crisis presidency will only get harder as it passes the six-month mark

2021-07-21 06:00:12

By K. Shalini

President Joe Biden said Tuesday the nation's vaccine push feels like a "constant uphill climb." He could have said the same of his entire crisis-tossed presidency as it grinds past the six-month mark.

After taking office at a moment of darkness, with more than 3,000 Americans dying of Covid-19 every day and the country reeling from his predecessor's assault on democracy, Biden faced the toughest initiation of any modern president.

It's not going to get any easier. A reinvigorated pandemic, a politically fractured nation and uncertainty over the fate of his agenda at home and abroad has left senior officials well aware that the Biden administration faces defining days ahead and a racing political clock, CNN reported on Tuesday.

As crises have cascaded one-after-the-other, it has often felt like Biden faces a tipping point every week or month only for the storms battering his White House to intensify.

With one-eighth of his term gone, Biden laid claim at a Cabinet meeting to vital progress against the virus, toward reviving the economy and restoring US global leadership, and said the majority of Americans were behind him. He has some cause for such an argument as his approval ratings have stayed steady at around 50% -- higher than former President Donald Trump ever managed -- and are even better on his handling of the health emergency his predecessor often denied.

"I just think that we're showing there is nothing that America is unable to do when we do it together," Biden said, in a typically optimistic tone that nevertheless represented a misleading analysis of a divided nation's politics.

Biden, who will headline a CNN town hall on Wednesday, passed a bold Covid-19 rescue bill worth nearly $2 trillion, and has made important strides against child poverty and reshaping the economy to benefit poorer citizens. His vaccine rollout has 160 million people fully protected. Millions of people have emerged from isolation, taken to the skies and the highways and experienced joyful family reunions. And although vaccine hesitancy -- mostly in Republican-run states -- and the raging Delta variant of Covid-19 have given the virus yet another opening, the country is unquestionably far better off than when he took office.

The President has also reestablished democracy as the centerpiece of the presidency at home and in US foreign policy. And he ended the tsunami of self-regard, corruption and demagoguery that poured out of the Oval Office every day and kept the nation on edge for four grueling years under Trump. That these last two achievements are even worth noting is a commentary on the corruption and extremism of the 45th President's administration and continuing efforts to tear the fundamental political bedrock of the country apart.

But the fact that Biden apparently felt the need to set the narrative of his first six months on Tuesday, in a way that came across as a little defensive, speaks to the extraordinary obstacles that lie in his path this summer and beyond.

He may be about to hit a brick wall in Congress that could put to the sword predictions of liberal commentators that he was the next Franklin Roosevelt or Lyndon Johnson. The bipartisan infrastructure plan that is a pillar of his presidency's core message -- that Americans need to unite -- is at this moment in deep peril. Biden's chances of passing a $3 trillion companion "human infrastructure" bill is hostage to a 50-50 Senate and centrist Democrats like Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia. Republicans across the nation are meanwhile enshrining new state laws that make it harder for Democrats to win future elections and easier for GOP office holders to manipulate the results.

Abroad, intransigence -- not to mention cyberspace hacking -- from Russia and China shows that it's one thing to declare "America is back" but another to change the world. And the prospect of Afghanistan falling to the Taliban after Biden ordered a full US pullout could blot his foreign policy record -- though millions of Americans agree with the need to end the country's longest war.

There are credible cases for Republicans to make on foreign policy -- on the threat from inflation, on Biden's failure to stem migrant flows at the border and the stop/start nature of jobs growth as the Covid economy reopens. Already those arguments are fueling a nascent midterm election campaign that history -- and redistricting of congressional seats -- suggests should favor the GOP.

In many ways, Biden's first six months in office are a lesson in the limitations of the modern presidency. His clear victory in last year's election doesn't give him the power to alter the suffocating 50-50 dynamic in the Senate and a slim Democratic majority in the House. He can't just change the epidemiological reality of a pernicious and adaptable virus, or magically reverse months of politicization of the pandemic by Republicans that is helping to feed vaccine skepticism.

Biden also has little capacity to drown out the anti-democratic rantings of Trump, or the continuing propaganda of conservative media that has falsely convinced millions of voters that the last election was stolen. And political factors make it impossible for him to reverse a national gun culture that has seen the scourge of random gun violence and mass killings rise once again as the pandemic eased.

Biden's tone is the key to his presidency

In many ways, the story of the Biden presidency so far can be told in the demeanor and behavior of the 78-year-old commander in chief.

Biden comes across as both moderate in tone and political preference -- but, in an intriguing political trick, also more radical and more progressive than his recent Democratic predecessors.

That duality has made him a difficult target for Republicans, who have instead turned their fire on his possible successor, Vice President Kamala Harris, who has endured a difficult first half-year that has raised questions about her political dexterity. She is tackling two issues with no clear wins -- stemming the exodus of migrants and refugees from Central America and countering the wave of restrictive voting laws that are protected from remedial counter-measures by Republicans wielding the Senate filibuster.

Biden has explained that he believes he was elected not just to end the pandemic but to act as a fixer for America's problems. He has chosen not to constantly insert himself into every national conversation. Where his predecessor tried to destroy the decorum of the presidency, Biden has restored it. The President's approach represents a bet that most Americans are paying little attention to Trump's cacophony even as the media works through the scandalous aftermath of the ex-President's January 6 insurrection and refusal to peacefully transfer power.

But his contention that there is space for Democrats and Republicans to work together in some areas -- despite the fact that much of the latter party has given up on democracy -- will be put to its stiffest test in the coming days as the fate of his infrastructure plan hangs in the balance.

Following their boss' lead, and apart from some whispers to the media from Harris' staff, Biden's team has become the most on-message and unified West Wing for some time -- making even President Barack Obama's buttoned up crowd seem ill-disciplined by comparison.

But there is a downside to such narrowed focus that sometimes comes across as arrogance. Biden's vows to always be transparent with Americans were challenged Tuesday by belated news of past breakthrough infections on vaccinated members of the President's staff. For weeks, the White House also insisted that there was no "crisis" on the southern border -- not wanting to give Republican attacks political oxygen, despite the fact that it was in fact a serious situation: US border authorities arrested or turned away the highest monthly number of migrants at the US-Mexico border in a decade in June, according to a Department of Homeland Security official.

And Biden's unwillingness to more forcibly confront the problem has not defused its potency for Republicans -- it is fueling an even more intense midterm election year assault that Harris' struggles on the issue have only exacerbated.

Few of Biden's predecessors could have understood the presidency's limitations and constant tests as well as he did, given his decades of experience in Washington. But even he might blanch at the relentless, exhausting trudge that his administration has become. Even the euphoria of Independence Day fireworks at the White House -- once seen as representing freedom from the pandemic -- was followed by dismaying advances by the virus and a deepening political quagmire.

At times, the signs of pressure, which have been masked by Biden's constant encouragement for Americans to stick together and target better days, have shown. Last week, he accused Facebook of "killing" people with vaccine misinformation. Biden almost torpedoed his own infrastructure compromise with Republicans hours after he announced it by apparently threatening to veto the measure if it was not passed in tandem with a massive, multi-trillion dollar budget bill demanded by the most liberal members of his own party. And Biden also snapped at CNN's Kaitlan Collins at the end of a news conference after his tough showdown in Geneva with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Each time, however, the White House press operation swung into action and Biden swiftly walked back his remarks -- preserving the stripped down demeanor that is now his trademark -- and that contrasts with his foot-in-mouth verbosity earlier in his political career.

In his inaugural address on January 20, the President told Americans "few periods in our nation's history have been more challenging or difficult than the one we're in now."

Post Your Comment

Most Recent News

NFL: Coach Mike Zimmer 'Disappointed and Frustrated' With Unvaccinated Minnesota Vikings

2 August, 2021

  Zimmer 'disappointed and frustrated' with unvaccinated Vikings  ...More

Premier League: Mikel Arteta Pleased With Ben White's Arsenal Debut

2 August, 2021

  Arteta pleased with White's Arsenal debut  ...More

Tokyo 2020 Olympics: USA's Simone Biles on Start List For Beam Final

2 August, 2021

  Simone Biles on start list for beam final  ...More

Get Published

Want to publish your own articles?

Create an account, and submit your articles, photos and/or videos. They will be reviewed by our professional copy editors, and if it is approved, it will be published for all our readers to view.