President Biden gets “right to work” after inauguration ceremony
This could impact everything from where you wear a mask to student loan payments.
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN)- President Biden tweeted moments after the inauguration he’s going right to work. Based on a memo issued by the White House earlier today, we know what that will entail.
We’re going to go through the highlights of his day 1 expected actions:
There is no time to waste when it comes to tackling the crises we face. That's why today, I am heading to the Oval Office to get right to work delivering bold action and immediate relief for American families.
— President Biden (@POTUS) January 20, 2021
LAUNCH “100 DAY MASKING CHALLENGE”
President Biden will launch the challenge to get people to wear masks for 100 days, calling it “Their Patriotic Duty”.
The Executive Order will focus on the area he can control – federal places.
The memo reads in part:
“Biden is also doing his part by issuing an Executive Order today requiring masks and physical distancing in all federal buildings, on all federal lands, and by federal employees and contractors. He is also asking the Department of Health and Human Services and Center for Disease Control to engage with state, local, Tribal, and territorial officials to implement masking, physical distancing, and other CDC public measures to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
GET BACK INTO STEP WITH THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION
This action will re-engage with the World Health Administration after distance made in the Trump administration.
It reads in part:
“(The WHO is) an entity that is critical to coordinating the international response to COVID-19, advancing preparedness for future epidemics and pandemics, and improving the health of all people. The Biden-Harris Administration – with Dr. Tony Fauci as Head of Delegation – will participate in the WHO Executive Board meeting that is ongoing this week. Dr. Fauci will deliver remarks as Head of Delegation to the Executive Board on January 21. Once the United States resumes its engagement with the WHO, the Biden-Harris Administration will work with the WHO and our partners to strengthen and reform the organization, support the COVID-19 health and humanitarian response, and advance global health and health security.”
COORDINATE A UNIFIED NATIONAL RESPONSE TO COVID
A COVID-19 Response Coordinator position will be created.
This position “will report directly to the President and be responsible for coordinating all elements of the COVID-19 response across government, including managing efforts to produce, supply, and distribute personal protective equipment, vaccines, and tests. In addition, this Executive Order restores the NSC Directorate for Global Health Security and Biodefense to focus on domestic and global biological
threats, play a critical role in stopping the COVID-19 pandemic, and prevent future biological catastrophes.”
EXTEND EVICTION AND FORECLOSURE MORATORIUMS
President Biden will ask the CDC to extend the moratorium until March 31, 2021 and ask Congress to give more help to people in this arena. The White House says 1 in 5 renters and 1 in 10 homeowners are behind on payments.
In additional: “..He will ask the Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, to consider extending foreclosure moratoriums for federally guaranteed mortgages and continuing applications for forbearance for federally guaranteed mortgages until at least March 31, 2021. On Tuesday, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) extended its foreclosure and eviction moratoriums until February 28, 2021. The president-elect will call on the agency to consider extending the foreclosure moratorium further and continue forbearance applications for all loans guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie
EXTEND STUDENT LOAN PAUSE
President Biden will ask the Department of Education to consider extending the student loan payment and interest pause until September 30, 2021.
“Currently, borrowers owe over $1.5 trillion in federal student loans. Borrowers of all ages are often faced with a tough tradeoff between making their student loan payments, investing in their long-term financial future, or paying their bills. The pandemic has only increased the economic hardship of the millions of Americans who have student debt.”
REJOIN THE PARIS AGREEMENT ON CLIMATE CHANGE
He’ll sign the necessary items today, and we should be an official Party in the Paris agreement 30 days from now.
ROLLBACK PRESIDENT TRUMP’S ENVIRONMENTAL ACTIONS IN ORDER
“Today, President-elect Biden will sign an Executive Order that takes critical first steps to address the climate crisis, create good union jobs, and advance environmental justice, while reversing the previous administration’s harmful policies. The order jumpstarts swift, initial action to tackle the climate crisis by:
● Directing all executive departments and agencies to immediately review and take appropriate action to address federal regulations and other executive actions taken during the last four years that were harmful to public health, damaging to the environment, unsupported by the best available science, or otherwise not in the national interest, including agency actions identified on the attached list;
● Directing agencies to consider revising vehicle fuel economy and emissions standards, methane emissions standards, and appliance and building efficiency standards to ensure that such standards cut pollution, save consumers money, and create good union jobs;
● Directing the Department of Interior to protect our nation’s treasures by reviewing the boundaries and conditions of the Grand Staircase-Escalante, Bears Ears, Northeast Canyons, and Seamounts Marine National Monuments and placing a temporary moratorium on all oil and natural gas leasing activities in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge;
● Re-establishing the Interagency Working Group on the Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases (GHG) and directing the issuance of an interim social cost of GHG schedule to ensure that agencies account for the full costs of GHG emissions, including climate risk, environmental justice and intergenerational equity; and
● Revoking, revising, or replacing additional Executive Orders, Presidential Proclamations, Memoranda, and Permits signed over the past 4 years that do not serve the U.S. national interest, including revoking the Presidential permit granted to the Keystone XL pipeline.”
SUPPORT UNDERSERVED COMMUNITIES AND ADVANCE RACIAL EQUALITY
The president-elect’s equity agenda is poised to advancing racial justice and build or strengthen underserved communities, including people of color and Americans with disabilities, LGBTQ+ Americans, religious minorities, and rural and urban communities facing persistent poverty.
“Everyone across America benefits when we take deliberate steps to become a more just society. Analysis suggests that closing racial gaps in wages, housing credit, lending opportunities, and access to higher education would amount to an additional $5 trillion in gross domestic product in the American economy over the next 5 years, and create millions of new jobs. We are a nation founded on principles of equality and it is in the interest of everyone across the country that the government be intentional in ensuring that its policies reach all of us in an equitable way. By advancing such equity, the federal government can build pathways so that everyone across America has the opportunity to reach their potential.”
President-elect Biden will sign executive actions today to:
● Establish that advancing equity for all — including people of color and others who have been historically underserved and marginalized — is the responsibility of the whole of our government;
● Direct every federal agency to undertake a baseline review of the state of equity within their agency and deliver an action plan within 200 days to address unequal barriers to opportunity in agency policies and programs;
● Launch a new equitable data working group to ensure that federal data reflects the diversity of America;
● Task the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) with working to more equitably allocate federal resources to empower and invest in communities of color and other underserved communities;
● Improve the delivery of government benefits and services to ensure that families of all backgrounds across the country can access opportunity, for example by reducing language access barriers;
● Study new methods that federal agencies can use to assess whether proposed policies advance equity;
● Direct agencies to engage with communities who have been historically underrepresented, underserved, and harmed by federal policies.
President-elect Biden wants to make sure there is accountability, asking Ambassador Susan Rice, as Domestic Policy Advisor, to lead the interagency process making sure the Federal Government is held accountable.
“In this Executive Order, the president-elect will also rescind the Trump Administration’s 1776 Commission, which has sought to erase America’s history of racial injustice. And, he will revoke President Trump’s damaging executive order limiting the ability of federal
government agencies, contractors and even some grantees from implementing important and needed diversity and inclusion training.”
REVERSE PRESIDENT TRUMP’S EXECUTIVE ORDER AND ALLOW NONCITIZENS TO BE COUNTED IN CENSUS
President-elect Biden will sign an Executive Order saying the previous order was “unlawful”. He also intends to make sure the Census Bureau has the time to get an accurate count for reach state. He will then present this information to Congress as they determine where federal resources are dedicated for the next decade.
PROTECTING, PRESERVING AND FORTIFYING THE DREAMERS
“In 2012, the Obama-Biden administration adopted Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) to provide temporary relief from deportation on a case-by-case basis to Dreamers, young people who were brought to this country as children. Since then, more than 700,000 young people have applied for this relief and met rigorous requirements and background checks. Many are serving our country in the armed services or as essential workers on the front lines of the pandemic. The Trump administration has tried to terminate DACA since 2017, but the U.S. Supreme Court rejected that effort and required reconsideration of that decision. The program continues, accepting new applications and renewing DACA for those who qualify under the 2012 requirements. But those opposed to DACA continue to challenge the program, threatening its continuance. The president-elect is committed to preserving and fortifying DACA.”
President Biden will also sign a Presidential Memorandum which directs the Secretary of Homeland Security, in tandem with the Attorney General, to take all appropriate actions under the law to achieve that goal. The Presidential Memorandum will also ask Congress to enact legislation “providing permanent status and a path to citizenship for people who came to this country as children and have lived, worked, and contributed to our country for many years.”
REVERSE THE MUSLIM BAN
President Biden will sign an Executive Action putting an end to the Muslim Ban, repealing Proclamations 9645 and 9983, which restrict entry into the United States from primarily Muslim and African countries, and instructs the State Department to restart visa processing for affected countries and to swiftly develop a proposal to restore fairness and remedy the harms caused by the bans, especially for individuals stuck in the waiver process and those who had immigrant visas denied. This is an important step in providing relief to individuals
and families harmed by this Trump Administration policy that is inconsistent with American values. The Executive Action also provides for the strengthening of screening and vetting for travelers by enhancing information sharing with foreign governments and capacity building with our partners, and directs reviews of other Trump Administration “extreme vetting” practices.”
STOP BORDER WALL CONSTRUCTION
“Bipartisan majorities in Congress refused in 2019 to fund President Trump’s plans for a massive wall along our southern border, even after he shut down the government over this issue. He then wastefully diverted billions of dollars to that construction. By proclamation, President-elect Biden will today declare an immediate termination of the national emergency declaration that was used as a pretext to justify some of the funding diversions for the wall. The proclamation directs an immediate pause in wall construction projects to allow a close review of the legality of the funding and contracting methods used, and to determine the best way to redirect funds that were diverted by the prior Administration to fund wall construction.”
FIGHT AGAINST DISCRIMINATION ON THE BASIS OF GENDER IDENTITY AND SEXUAL ORIENTATION
“President Biden will sign an Executive Order that builds on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County (2020) and ensures that the federal government interprets Title VII of the the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as prohibiting workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. This Order will also direct agencies to take all lawful steps to make sure that federal
anti-discrimination statutes that cover sex discrimination prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, protecting the rights of LGBTQ+ persons.”
MAKING SURE THE GOVERNMENT WORKS FOR AND EVERY AMERICAN
President Biden’s next Executive Order will be focused on restoring and maintaining public trust in government, and ensure that we are a government “for the people.” Every appointee in the Executive Branc will be told to sign an ethics pledge.
“The ethics pledge and related ethics rules in the Executive Order are designed to ensure that executive branch employees act in the interest of the American people and not for personal gain. And, the pledge commits federal employees to uphold the independence of the Department of Justice.”
REGULATORY PROCESS EXECUTIVE ORDER, PRESIDENTIAL MEMORANDUM
The Biden White House believes regulations are an important tool for the federal government to address any national crisis.
“The Trump Administration unnecessarily hamstrung this critical tool by creating arbitrary obstacles to regulatory action. Today, the president-elect will issue a Presidential Memorandum withdrawing the Trump Administration’s regulatory process executive orders to remove those needless obstacles to regulating in the public’s interest. And, the president-elect will direct the Director of the OMB to develop
recommendations for improving and modernizing regulatory review. These recommendations will create a process to advance regulations that promote public health and safety, economic growth, social welfare, racial justice, environmental stewardship, human dignity, equity, and the interests of future generations.
Today, the White House Chief of Staff will also issue a regulatory freeze memo that will pause any new regulations from moving forward and give the incoming Administration an opportunity to review any regulations that the Trump Administration tried to finalize in its last days. The memo directs all agencies to confer with the Director of OMB before renewing any regulatory activity. This action will allow the Biden Administration prevent any detrimental so-called “midnight regulations” from taking effect, while ensuring that urgent measures in the public’s interest can proceed.
As President-elect Biden works to aggressively tackle the simultaneous crises our country faces, he is focused on ensuring that the approaches he takes benefit working Americans and advance racial equity across our society. An assessment of how these day one actions further both of those fundamental goals of the Biden presidency is below.”
EXECUTIVE ACTION TO ADVANCE RACIAL EQUITY
“President-elect Biden’s executive actions to restore equal treatment under the law for people across America and to direct a whole-of-government approach to racial justice redirects the federal government to treat Americans fairly. These sweeping actions deliver on the president-elect’s commitments to equity and task agencies with taking immediate steps to redress injustices.
The COVID-19 crisis has claimed more than 400,000 American lives – but for Black and Brown Americans, it’s a mass casualty event. Because of structural racism, people of color are contracting COVID-19 at higher rates and dying from COVID-19 at higher rates. President-elect Biden’s executive orders to change the course of the virus, including establishing a coordinated national response and implementing a mask mandate on federal property, will help slow the spread of the virus in communities of color.
Extending the federal eviction moratorium and asking federal agencies to consider extending foreclosure moratoriums for federally guaranteed mortgages will provide relief to the families of color that face higher risks of eviction and housing loss. The president-elect has also directed all executive departments and agencies to review actions taken over the last four years and revise those policies that run counter to his commitment to environmental justice, including undoing the harmful rollbacks of clean air and clean water protection that disproportionately impact low-income communities and communities of color.”