Biden says ‘America is on the move again’ – but unity or even reconciliation seems far off

US News

It was a speech full of promises but pragmatism too.

US President Joe Biden was clear that he’d inherited a divided and struggling nation but declared: “America is on the move again…”

It was the biggest speech of his presidency so far; a moment for him to reach out, he hopes, to the “forgotten” in the country with pledges of financial support, health care reform and to restore faith in the democratic process.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

You Might Like

Biden vows to ‘defend America’s interests’

On Thursday, he is in Georgia, the state which made it possible for him to make such bold proposals on Capitol Hill last night.

It was Georgia which propelled Mr Biden to the White House. Republican red for nearly two decades, it flipped blue for Biden in November.

But more than that, it was January’s run-off elections, won by Senators Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, that flipped control of the US Senate to the democrats.

Georgia is why the Democrats have a razor thin majority on the Hill and the ability to push through change.

More from Georgia

Without Georgia, the president’s agenda would have been much more limited. With a divided Washington he’d have faced the same frustrations which stalled Obama’s vision.

Biden’s presidency, young though it is, feels a little like Obama with hindsight: correcting mistakes from that presidency and doing what couldn’t be done back then.

Subscribe to the Daily podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Spreaker

But what about America’s core struggle? Division. The millions who voted for Donald Trump.

Not far from where the president will be in Georgia is Stone Mountain: site of a vast cliff side carving of three confederate generals. It is a controversial place.

Last year it was a central backdrop for American division. People on the left and right of politics gathered for protests; the country’s culture war was raw here.

Months on and it’s quiet. But the polarisation remains. Among the tourists we met there were Curt and Sherrie Elliott, retired now and exploring their country state by state.

Joe Biden
Image:
Joe Biden still has the big challenge of uniting the divided country he inherited

“Well, we’re not really impressed. First of all, he didn’t win the election….” Curt tells me.

“And secondly, right off the bat, he starts out with all these executive orders over overextending his power… I don’t feel like we’re any closer to unity at all, because… he’s doing things that are not what the Republicans were in favour of and wanted. So how in the world is he ever trying to achieve any type of bipartisanship?”

I ask about the remarkable success President Biden has had with the vaccine programme.

“We’re not sure if it works. It’s in an experimental stage. It’s not proven…. No, we are not going to get the vaccine. There’s no way. They will have to hold us down and force us to get the vaccine.” His wife nods.

The conversion is the same as so many that I had with supporters of Donald Trump just before the election.

Sky News spoke to Donald Trump supporters Curt and Sherrie in Georgia
Image:
Sky News spoke to Donald Trump supporters Curt and Sherrie in Georgia

Curt and Sherrie are two out of 74 million Americans who voted for Mr Trump in November’s election; the most divisive in US history.

The TRUMP / PENCE yard signs and billboards have gone. But the passion for Donald Trump and his style of politics feels unwavering.

“America is on the move again…” was President Biden’s core message last night.

Yet it still feels like it’s moving in two different directions. Unity or even reconciliation feels far off.

Articles You May Like

India reports over 412,000 new Covid cases as court demands plan to tackle oxygen shortage in Delhi
CROWDER: Liberal lies about racist police origins DEBUNKED
‘Herd Immunity’ Not Possible in U.S., Experts Say, But We May Not Need It
SHOUTING MSNBC Host Loses It at GOP Governor Over Trans Bill in State
Democratic National Committee Demands Facebook Permanently Ban Trump

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *