Biden’s Executive Orders So Far

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By — Danny Kistner

In his first sixteen days in office, Joe Biden has written 48 different executive orders, proclamations, and memorandums in regards to the climate, healthcare, economy, immigration and a number of other issues. Sixteen of these 48 executive actions have been to revoke policies from his predecessor, and over a third have been in relation to health care. In comparison, FDR signed 30 in his first month as president. Biden will have to continue this active streak during his presidency to ensure his promises to the nation made during his campaign are fulfilled. 

Executive actions in regards to the environment, from earliest date to most recent include rejoining the Paris climate accord, which will take 30 days, canceling the Keystone XL pipeline, which also includes reversing over 100 different Trump actions on the environment, and reestablishing the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, whose director will be tasked with monitoring the scientific integrity of every other agency. Biden also stated that he would announce the new emissions reduction target on April 22nd as well as have the government recognize climate change as an essential issue in foreign policy and national security. 

In terms of healthcare, Biden is to reopen HealthCare.gov from February 15th to May 15th, and is ensuring that federal agencies look at any policies that may deny people access to the Affordable Care Act. He also repealed the “Mexico City Policy” which banned U.S. funding of foregin nonprofits whose goals were to perform or promote aborations. 

The economy will be one of Biden’s greatest challenges as President, especially given the on going COVID pandemic. He has extended the moratorium on evictions and foreclosures until March 31st, as well as the pause on student loan payments until the 30ths of September. 

In regards to the coronavirus, he has asked Americans to wear masks for at least a hundred days and has stopped the U.S. withdrawal from the WHO. Biden has also created a COVID-19 task force to help with the distributions of vaccines and medical equipment. This also includes actions such as expanding testing and speeding up the production of supplies and vaccines and has enhanced the collection of information in regards to data surrounding the coronavirus, among over half a dozen other orders that are meant to ensure the health and safety of the nation. 

Arguably, the largest chunk of Biden’s executive orders have been in regards to immigration, and were of his earliest actions, which he began to make January 2nd. These include revoking Trump’s order which allowed for the separation of families at the border between the U.S. and Mexico, as well as Donald Trump’s order that made it so that immigrants would have to repay the government if they received any public benefits. A number of the other immigration related orders also worked to repeal Trump’s previous actions and have ensured that LGBTQ+ refugees are given equal access to services that are meant to help them. Biden has also extended the deferrals of deportation for Liberians until the 30th of June 2022.

There have been a number of other, equally important executive orders as well, which were made in regards to Native Americans, the discrimination of Asian Americans in the past year as a result of the coronavirus, and LGBTQ+ people and opportunities that may be withheld from them in regards to their identity. The full list and details can be read about on the National Archive’s Federal Register website, using this link: https://www.federalregister.gov/presidential-documents/executive-orders/joe-biden/2021nm