How a Joe Biden presidency could look – with return of Obamacare, tougher gun controls & tax clampdown on rich

4 weeks ago 2

JOE Biden called this election "the battle for the soul of the nation".

And with two radically different futures for the US balanced on a knife edge, it looks like he might have been right.

Joe Biden currently looks set to be the next US President - but what will he do in power?

14

Joe Biden currently looks set to be the next US President - but what will he do in power? Credit: AFP or licensors

But what would the veteran Democrat do with the nation's soul if he wins it, which he is on the brink of doing after taking the key states of Wisconsin and Michigan?

He'll certainly have his work cut out – turning the tide on both the pandemic and a recession at the same time will make for an extremely difficult first term.

And with the Republicans on track to keep control of the Senate, Biden could face insurmountable legislative stumbling blocks in getting any of his flagship policies passed.

But even if his agenda is frustrated, Biden will undoubtedly chart a drastically different course from the one set by Trump for the past four years.

From rejuvenating Obama's healthcare crusade to rebuilding bridges with overseas allies, here's what a Biden administration could look like.

Coronavirus crackdown

One of the first and biggest challenges facing Biden on assuming office is tackling the pandemic.

The US has suffered more Covid-19 deaths than any other country on Earth, with 240,000 killed so far, and the spread of the bug has continued to spiral all the way up to 100,000 new cases a day this month.

A student receiving a coronavirus test in New York - Biden plans to expand testing

14

A student receiving a coronavirus test in New York - Biden plans to expand testingCredit: AFP or licensors

Firefighters decontaminating their PPE - which Biden wants to drastically increase the supply of

14

Firefighters decontaminating their PPE - which Biden wants to drastically increase the supply ofCredit: Getty Images - Getty

Biden wants to set up a national contact-tracing programme, aggressively expand testing, and invest billions in providing vaccines for free to Americans, when available.

He'll also base the federal response to the pandemic on science, requiring face coverings to be worn outside of households and on federal property.

Healthcare overhaul

Biden also has radically different plans to Trump on healthcare which go way beyond managing the coronavirus.

He wants to expand the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which Trump wants to repeal, which gives greater powers of federal regulation on the health insurance industry, including through making it illegal to deny coverage to someone with a pre-existing condition.

A Covid patient being treated in New York - the Democrats' healthcare plan reaches far beyond the pandemic

14

A Covid patient being treated in New York - the Democrats' healthcare plan reaches far beyond the pandemicCredit: Getty Images - Getty

Biden also wants to expand access to affordable healthcare for poorer Americans

14

Biden also wants to expand access to affordable healthcare for poorer AmericansCredit: AP:Associated Press

He also plans to lower the age at which people qualify for Medicare – medical support for the elderly – from 65 to 60.

Low-income Americans would additionally be given access to affordable healthcare and tighter controls would be placed on drug prices.

Economic revolution

Biden says he will roll back Trump's tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans, specifically on those earning over $400,000 a year.

The former Vice President will simultaneously introduce tax breaks for working class citizens throughout the pandemic.

Biden speaking with supporters - he wants to make big economic changes

14

Biden speaking with supporters - he wants to make big economic changes Credit: Reuters

Measures would include an increase in the child tax credit, allowing the lowest-income families to receive a full refund on the credit.

And he'll increase the corporate tax rate from 21 per cent to 28 per cent as Obama planned to do.

The minimum wage would also be bumped up to $15 (£11.50) an hour, and Biden will pour billions into improving infrastructure and revivifying American manufacturing through expanded use of Buy American rules.

Changing climate

One of Biden's most ambitious – and expensive – policies is his Clean Energy Revolution.

Trump's climate change scepticism would be completely reversed under Biden, who wants to declare an emergency on the issue

14

Trump's climate change scepticism would be completely reversed under Biden, who wants to declare an emergency on the issueCredit: Getty - Contributor

The $2trillion plan would seek to ban new leases for oil and gas drilling on public land, invest in green energy production, and aim for the US to reach net zero emissions by 2050.

He'd also immediately rejoin the Paris Climate Accord, which Trump pulled out of, and declare climate change a national security emergency.

Rebuilding relationships

The Paris Climate Accord isn't the only treaty on which Biden would reverse Trump's wishes.

He'd also re-enter the Iran nuclear deal which he helped to negotiate under Obama – which Trump called the "worst ever" deal negotiated by the US.

Biden wants to see an end to the 'forever wars' of the Middle East like in Afghanistan

14

Biden wants to see an end to the 'forever wars' of the Middle East like in AfghanistanCredit: Getty Images - Getty

Biden would also seek to restore relationships with other countries which have been damaged by Trump's "America First" approach to diplomacy.

That would include measures like scrapping the travel ban from muslim majority countries, ending so-called "forever wars" in Afghanistan and the Middle East, and hosting a "Summit for Democracy" with other democratic nations.

Reloading gun control

Biden has vowed to end the epidemic of gun violence in the US, where 40,000 people a year die from firearm injuries.

He plans to do it by repealing laws which currently protect weapons manufacturers from accountability for their products.

An armed Trump supporter at a demonstration in Arizona following the election

14

An armed Trump supporter at a demonstration in Arizona following the electionCredit: AP:Associated Press

And Biden intends bring in an outright ban on the manufacture and sale of assault rifles and high-capacity magazines which have frequently been used in mass shootings.

He'll also try and bring in a buy-back programme to get existing assault weapons out of communities and strengthen background checks on gun buyers.

Research into effectively tackling gun violence would also be funded and implemented.

Policing the police

Joe Biden has outright rejected calls to defund the police in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests against racial violence this year.

Instead, Biden says he wants to "redirect" funding and demilitarise cops across the States.

Cops in riot gear clearing the streets of LA after crowds assembled in the wake of the election

14

Cops in riot gear clearing the streets of LA after crowds assembled in the wake of the electionCredit: AP:Associated Press

Other reforms would include granting easier access to misconduct records.

And he says he wants to reduce the number of people incarcerated in America by sending minor drug offenders to drug courts instead of jail, while incentivising states to focus on preventing crime.

Britain, Boris & Brexit

Biden's arrival in the White House could mean serious headaches for Boris Johnson – most notably because of the loss of a potential trade deal.

The presidential candidate has been outspoken in his criticism of Brexit, particularly in terms of the ramifications it could have for peace in Northern Ireland.

"We can’t allow the Good Friday Agreement that brought peace to Northern Ireland to become a casualty of Brexit," Biden tweeted earlier this year.

Biden could cause chaos for Downing Street with his stated anti-Brexit stance

14

Biden could cause chaos for Downing Street with his stated anti-Brexit stanceCredit: Reuters

Boris Johnson might struggle to get a US/UK trade deal done with Biden in the Oval Office

14

Boris Johnson might struggle to get a US/UK trade deal done with Biden in the Oval OfficeCredit: HOC/JESSICA TAYLOR

Boris' negotiation position of threatening to leave the EU without a deal could be weakened if Brussels sees issues arising between Downing Street and Washington.

Biden will also not have forgotten some of Boris' comments about his allies, including saying that "part-Kenyan" Obama has an "ancestral dislike of the British empire".

But on some issues like climate change and Iran, the Prime Minister is more closely aligned with Biden than Trump and progress may be more easily made.

You're hired

So far, the only confirmed top job in a Biden administration is that of Kamala Harris, who would serve as his Vice President.

But it's not yet known who would be in line for top jobs in his cabinet – though heated speculation is swirling.

Kamala Harris will be Biden's VP, but it's not yet clear who other top jobs will go to

14

Kamala Harris will be Biden's VP, but it's not yet clear who other top jobs will go toCredit: Reuters

He's previously promised to emphasise diversity, while many commentators believe several Republicans could be chosen to promote bipartisanship.

One of his first announcements will be his Chief of Staff, which some reports suggest may go to Ron Klain, who was the first Chief of Staff Biden worked with in the Obama White House.

Democratic nomination rival Elizabeth Warren has been linked with Treasury Secretary job, while socialist star Bernie Sanders has been floated for several positions.

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders might end up featuring in a Biden cabinet

14

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders might end up featuring in a Biden cabinetCredit: AP:Associated Press

WILD THINGS

Animals found after decades of 'extinction' - including the world's biggest bee

OUR HEROES

We wouldn't be here without Unknown Warrior & millions like him, says VC hero

Investigation

DIET DANGER

How TikTok became hotbed of pro-anorexic videos & 'thinspiration' influencers

SPIES & LIES

How undercover cops had sex with innocent women they spied on & even had KIDS

THE LAST HURRAH

From boozing to finding love - how to live it up before lockdown hits

But to make any appointments, Biden first has to win the election, which as yet remains undecided as the legal row over mail-in ballots deepens.

"I am not here to declare that we have won," Biden said on election night, in which he took the lead over Trump in Electoral College votes.

"But I am here to report when the count is finished, we believe we will be the winners."

Joe Biden says he is 'confident' as he calls for unity while votes continue to be counted in 2020 election

Read Entire Article