Joseph R. Biden Jr was waiting a long time for the speech he was reading in Delaware on Saturday night. Not only five days have passed since Election Day, but it can be said that it has been 48 years since he was first elected to the Senate, in which he ran for president three times. And at the age of 77, as Mr. Biden raced across the tarmac with sirens and squeals, radiant and almost surprised by the applause, it was clear his time had come.
Here are five points taken from the president-elect’s winning speech.
A new tune from the top.
The contrast between Mr. Biden and President Trump is clear and noticeable in almost every paragraph, as the president-elect evokes his own spirit and shares his trust at this point with supporters. and the people around him.
He’s quoted from a hymn, “On Eagle’s Wings.” He thanked his supporters: “I owe you, I owe you, I owe you everything.” He warmly praised Kamala Harris, his running friend, and commemorated the fact that she would be the first woman, let alone woman of color, as vice president: “It’s been a long overdue. Okay, and tonight we are reminded of all the people who have fought so hard for so many years to make this a reality. “
Above all, even as the country faces one of the darkest periods in its history – deadly pandemic, economic slowdown, political polarization – Mr. Biden remains relentlessly optimistic, even more. happy. “We can do it,” he said. “I know we can.”
There are many notable passages in the speech, but one that stands out. “Let this era of grim demons in America begin to end here and now,” he said. That’s probably the story everyone will talk about in the long run of Biden’s presidency.
Mr. Biden only mentioned Mr. Trump’s name once in his 17-minute speech. He ignored the fact that the president did not give in, and that he challenged – without any proof – of the legality of the election. Nor did Mr. Biden note that many of the top Republican leaders, presumably following Trump’s lead, did not give him conventional congratulations.
But if Mr. Biden did not support the president, he certainly spoke with his supporters, a notable contrast to Mr. Trump’s speech after his own victory in 2016. “With Who voted for President Trump, I understand your disappointment tonight. ” he say. “I myself have lost a few elections. But now, let’s give each other a chance.
And while ignoring Mr. Trump’s protests about the election, Mr. Biden made it clear that there should be no doubt about the validity of the results. “The people of this country have spoken out,” he said. “They gave us a clear victory. A convincing victory. A win for ‘We the People.’ We won with the most votes ever voted for the presidential ticket in the history of this country – 74 million ”.
Mr. Biden’s strategy here is very clear. He passed the 270 Electoral College votes needed to become president and possibly ended up more than 300 votes. Now he passed the election with Mr. Trump and became president-elect. The transition is at hand and the pitfalls of the presidency have begun to surround him – obviously in the size of the Secret Service team that follows him to speak and how every broadcaster talks about he is as president-elect.
He is looking to set Mr. Trump aside and move on to the urgent job of forming a new government and dealing with the crises he will face.
Priority one: Pandemic.
Mr. Biden has no doubts that the coronavirus pandemic will be a priority for his administration in a way that it did not have under Mr. Trump.
Mr. Biden announced that on Monday he will appoint top medical and scientific experts on a committee to draft a plan to fight the pandemic, which he says will be ready to act as he and Mrs. Harris took office in January. Mr. Biden told the nation that controlling the coronavirus is crucial for normalization and economic well-being.
“We cannot repair the economy, revive or enjoy life’s most precious moments – hugging a grandchild, birthdays, weddings, graduations, all the moments,” he said. most important to us – until we get this virus under control.
Mr. Trump has taken a much different approach. Throughout his campaign, he urged Americans not to fear the virus, asserting that the danger is overstated by his political opponents. He disregarded the advice of health officials about preventive measures such as wearing a mask, even though he himself had been diagnosed with the virus.
Mr. Biden’s victory comes as the country is setting a daily record for new infections and health authorities have warned of a bleak winter. Masks were everywhere during his celebration.
Seeking ‘the belief of the people.’
Mr. Trump defined the tone of his presidency at his inauguration, with a dark speech in which he notably did not extend beyond his supporters’ base. The strategy led him to a narrow victory in 2016 – in the Electoral College; he lost the popular vote – and he managed to repeat it in his failed campaign this year.
Mr. Biden aggressively turned the other direction.
“I am committed to being a president who seeks not to divide but to unify – who doesn’t see the red and green states, but as a United States,” he said on Saturday. “And who will work with all his heart to win the trust of the people”.
That, to some extent, reflects what Mr. Biden said during the campaign, but the approach will take on new urgency when he becomes president. Waiting for the results of two toppings in Georgia, the Senate is controlled by the Republican party and he will need to contact senators from the red states if he wants to enact an agenda.
Their names in the light.
There have been some impressive fireworks displays in this campaign – fireworks displays across the Washington skyline on the night that Mr. Trump accepted the Republican nomination from the White House’s back lawn that appeared in mind.
However, this sets a hard to match standard: Fireworks and drones spell Mr. Biden’s name, Harris’s name, and a map of the United States. Mr. Biden and Mrs. Harris, surrounded by their family, stood on the stage staring into the Delaware sky, the light repeating the night that Mr. Biden had been waiting for most of his life.