Since Congress handed President Trump an omnibus budget and COVID relief bill, we’ve been on pins and needles about whether he’d sign it, veto it, or sit on it in a pocket veto. Now we see the president has signed the bill.
Saturday night, Joe Biden “demanded” that Trump sign it, in a scathing, and largely true, plea, calling it an “abdication of responsibility.”
This abdication of responsibility has devastating consequences. Today, about 10 million Americans will lose unemployment insurance benefits” Biden continued. “In just a few days, government funding will expire, putting vital services and paychecks for military personnel at risk. In less than a week, a moratorium on evictions expires, putting millions at risk of being forced from their homes over the holidays.
The White House, in good faith, negotiated the current $900 billion relief, and then Trump, as is his pattern, snatched the rug. This time, it didn’t work, and Joe Biden looks very presidential, while Trump looks powerless, as if Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had to talk him down from the ledge, as the adult in the room.
The House will deliver nothing on Section 230, and the Senate will be delayed in any action on a $2000 stimulus until after Joe Biden assumes the presidency. The Senate will meet on December 29th to officially override Trump’s veto of the NDAA. Trump will get nothing from his grandstanding on either bill.
In demanding that Trump do the right thing, then having Trump do it (versus following Trump’s penchant for hoisting the middle finger), Joe Biden has completed the first act of his presidency.
Biden should give Trump a pat on the back for doing the right thing. There’s still a few weeks of circus time for Trump to act out between now and Biden’s inauguration. The nation is on edge with coronavirus lockdowns, suicides and addiction deaths, and the surge in cases and hospitalizations. For some, this was the worst Christmas ever.
If we are to begin healing, as Biden promises, he needs to show some grace. Trump is doing his best to save face, and regardless of why he finally concluded he needs to sign the bill (Trump is very good at “reading the room” of his supporters, perhaps he perceived things won’t go so well if he holds out), Biden owes Trump a “thank you” for signing the bill.
Photo By The White House - Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=96620522