Pres. Joe Biden is taking several major losses just a couple of weeks following the new year, including on his major initiatives regarding vaccine mandates and election laws. This is happening while the administration seems to be limping into a midterm election year, struggling to keep together its party and reach its goals.
Two of the biggest blows to the Biden administration this year came about on Thursday – one at the hands of two senators from the Democratic party while the other was dealt by the Supreme Court.
On Thursday afternoon, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), laid out in detail why she opposes the partisan changes to the Senate filibuster. This essentially killed her party’s plan to pass two impactful election bills.
Sinema Delivers Senate Floor Remarks on Voting Rights, America's Divisions, and the U.S. Senate https://t.co/72zAFWDPjO
— Kyrsten Sinema (@SenatorSinema) January 13, 2022
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“Today marks the longest time in history that the Senate has been equally divided,” Sinema stated on Thursday. “The House of Representatives is nearly equally divided as well. Our mandate, it seems evident to me, [is] work together and get stuff done for America.”
On the other hand, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va) rolled out a statement, having essentially the same argument as Sinema, on Thursday.
This big blow could have been the top news story for a few days, however, it was eclipsed by another batch of bad news for the current administration just a few hours later: The Supreme Court has blocked Biden’s vaccine mandate for large private businesses.
According to the ruling, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration likely lacked the authority to require this mandate. The ruling said that the law that created the agency “empowers the Secretary to set workplace safety standards, not broad public health measures.”
Although, the Supreme Court allowed the said mandate to be enforced among health care workers. However, OSHA’s vaccine mandate for large employers reached more Americans. The ruling entails that the administration won’t have the ability to enforce the said mandate as legal challenges go on, likely for months, in lower courts.
These twin losses for the Biden administration that came about within a few hours of each other have surfaced all while the White House was already reeling to start 2022.
Biden Administration, last 24 hours:
— 7% inflation
— 33% approval rating for Biden
— Sinema reaffirmed filibuster supporter
— Supreme Court struck down vaccine mandate
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) January 13, 2022
On Wednesday, large inflation numbers have been announced, making it less likely that the Democratic Party would have the means to save their massive reconciliation spending bill. This was the president’s domestic legislative priority, and now it looks like it won’t see the light of day.
Apart from that, the current administration is also struggling to provide all Americans with access to rapid COVID-19 tests via mail following a shortage of kits over the holidays.
On top of all this, polls indicated that Biden has sunk far down with regards to his approval ratings as the Democratic Party is currently at risk of losing its control in Congress. If this comes to fruition, it would stall any plans or agenda the president may hope to push forward with for the rest of his time at the White House.
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