Washington, Apr 29 (EFE).- United States President Joe Biden celebrated his first 100 days in power on Thursday with a trip to Georgia, a state he snatched from Donald Trump and that not only took him to the White House but also gave Democrats control of Congress.
In Georgia, Biden and first lady Jill Biden started the day with a private visit to former president Jimmy Carter (1977-1981) and former first lady Rosalynn Carter.
The couple then flew to the capital of Georgia to hold a drive-in rally in Duluth, in the Atlanta suburbs, which were key to Biden’s electoral triumph there in November.
What was to be a 100-day celebration rally, however, was marred by protests shortly after the event began.
“End detention now!” and “Abolish ICE!” (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) were some of the demands for the president who, beyond the pandemic, has had immigration as his main challenge.
With some weariness but without losing his composure, Biden replied: “I agree. I’m working on it, man. Give me five more days.”
And addressing the rest of the attendees, he said: “Folks, you all know what they’re talking about. There should be no private prisons, period. Private detention centers – they should not exist. And we’re working to close all of them.”
One of Biden’s campaign promises was to suspend all government contracts with private prisons, but so far he has only ordered the cancellation of those that house common prisoners, leaving those related to migrants standing.
The president spent much of the rest of his speech in Georgia promoting his employment and welfare plans, budgeted at more than $4 trillion and requiring Congress to pass.
But he especially wanted to convey the message that with his coming to power, the government is “working again” on all fronts, from the massive vaccination campaign to the fight against the climate crisis.
“We’re choosing hope over fear, truth over lies, light over darkness. We’re working, we’re working again. We’re dreaming again. We’re discovering again. And we’re leading the world again,” he said.
Order has returned to the White House in the first 100 days of Biden, a president whose pragmatism and discretion have given him a more productive start than his predecessors, although he has so far failed to deliver on his main promise: to unite a deeply polarized country.
Biden took office in the throes of one of the gravest events in US history, an assault on the Capitol on Jan. 6, spurred on in part by then-president Trump, who repeatedly told his followers that the election had been stolen from him.
That polarization no longer sucks all the oxygen out of Washington as it did during the Trump era, but it still rears its head in debates about immigration, voting restrictions, racism and police brutality and Covid-19 vaccines, among other areas. EFE