Joe Biden has come out this past week promising a flurry of executive decisions in his first weeks in office and announced a sweeping coronavirus relief plan that sought to establish to infrastructure for rapid vaccine distribution and economic relief to hard-hit Americans.
Former Pennsylvania Governor, Ed Rendell, joined The Cats Roundtable to urge Americans of all stripes to give President-elect Joe Biden a chance.
“Joe Biden is what he appears to be—there’s no guile, there’s no putting on airs,” Rendell said, adding Biden was listening to the calls of unity from both red and blue.
While President Trump’s Operation Warp Speed created a vaccine, the distribution of doses has been mired in red tape, miscommunication, and the impending transition of power. While HHS Secretary Alex Azar announced the government would release all available doses this past week, it quickly became apparent most doses had already been distributed.
Rendell believed an optimistic timeline for a full-speed vaccination program could lead to some semblance of normalcy by “the end of April.”
And that timeline couldn’t come soon enough. While Congress was able to pass a 900 billion dollar relief bill at the end of December, many lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have admitted Americans need assistance. Rendell believed the windfall of pandemic relief could “give a signal to the disaffected people” in the country that flocked to Trump.
“Nobody gave a damn about what was happening in their lives,” Rendell said candidly, adding if Biden “can adopt some policies that show them that we do care about them, that they’re an important part of this country, maybe he can bring it together.”
And Biden, if he wants to bring the country together, needs to cut through a thick sea of rhetoric on both sides of the aisle. Rendell told The Cats Roundtable he was “guardedly optimistic” Biden can fall on his record of working through the partisanship with Republicans, cut through the spin, and get back to the middle.
“I think Joe Biden, almost religiously, stayed true to his moderate goals,” Rendell said.
Those moderate goals, according to Rendell, include creating “an atmosphere that is good and conducive to business growth” to kickstart job creation that doesn’t “throw money at businesses.” But with reports Biden is expected to issue a flurry of executive orders in his first weeks in office, reversing many of President Trump’s policies, plus a majority Democratic House and Senate, it remains to be seen how much the new president will find it necessary to live up to his bipartisan appeal.
With MLK’s birthday on January 18th, former Pennsylvania Governor condemned the violence on Capitol Hill.
“If a movement resorts to violence, it pretty much ends the movement,” Rendell asserted. “So I think, if these folks took a lesson from how Martin Luther King made such progress, it would be good for all of us.”
While Americans remain discontent, restless, and uncertain ahead of the inauguration, Rendell offered some fortitude that President Biden has promised to give all corners of the country a voice.
“Only thing I’d say, whether you’re democrat, republican, liberal, conservative, moderate, progressive, give the new president a chance, let’s see what he can do. Let’s see what he and his people can do. Look, when the president of the United States is doing well, that means the country’s doing well. So let’s all hope he can do what he says he can do, and I believe he can.”
Listen to the interview below