On Day 11, the Biden White House prepares to exercise more power than Trump ever had—and take less responsibility than ever.
RINOs Granted Audience for COVID Relief Negotiations.
On Sunday morning, a group of ten Senate Republicans (Sens. Collins, Cassidy, Portman, Young, Rounds, Murkowski, Romney, Capito, Moran, and Tillis) wrote to the President requesting a meeting to outline a dramatically pared-back $618 billion relief plan—about one-third of what Biden is proposing. Biden is expected to meet with the group on Monday.
But he’s ready and willing to forge ahead without them: Although Biden wants to host dialogue, “the need for action is urgent, and the scale of what must be done is large,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said.
Don’t forget: With both houses of Congress now controlled by Democrats, Biden has more power than Trump ever did—and no excuse for failing to meet the standards he set as a candidate.
Where Could Trump Have Put Those 20 Million Vaccines?
Just 11 days in, “blame it on Trump” has become a well-worn response to scrutiny. Team Biden doesn’t know where 20 million vaccine doses went—and it’s all Donald Trump’s fault.
Out of nearly 50 million coronavirus vaccine doses distributed to states, 20 million are unaccounted for. The doses could be in shipping, in storage, or in a freezer somewhere, but no one on the state or federal level seems to know. About two million may be temporarily “missing” because of lags in reporting from states, the Biden team says—but otherwise, consider it a failure of the Trump administration, who successfully vaccinated 2.8 million Americans by the end of 2020.
It was the same story on January 25, when the Biden camp couldn’t even provide a ballpark figure when asked how many vaccine doses the government had on hand.
“What we’re inheriting from the prior administration… is much worse than we could have imagined,” Psaki said.
When will this excuse expire—particularly on issues moving as rapidly as vaccine distribution? At what point does the Biden White House own the success or failure of their vaccine distribution strategy and overall Coronavirus response—one month in? 100 days in? Never?
We will be sure to circle back.
On Sunday, Biden withdrew all 73 spending cuts proposed by President Trump on January 14.
The proposed cuts, totaling $27.4 billion, were part of Trump’s response to the December Coronavirus relief bill, which he eventually signed with the caveat that he would send back a redlined version to Congress as well as submit a formal rescissions request.
Trump’s rescissions would have rolled back funding across federal agencies and programs, including funds for the District of Columbia, National Endowment for the Arts and Humanities, U.S. Agency for International Development, and the Peace Corps—spending that Biden will retain as he stresses the urgency of delivering a $2 trillion bill with a smaller stimulus check than originally promised.