President Joe Biden’s first two months in power went remarkably smoothly considering he took office amid a once-in-a-century pandemic, a consequent economic crisis and his predecessor’s refusal to recognize his victory. But in his first formal news conference Thursday, he’ll face scrutiny on gun control and immigration, two sudden tests of leadership for which his administration has lacked immediate answers.
Biden is expected to highlight blasting through his 100 million doses in 100 days timeline and the passage of his $1.9 trillion Covid-19 rescue bill, which, along with other social legislation in the planning stages, suggests that he is in the process of shaping the most progressive and ambitious Democratic presidency in decades. The doubling of the pace of vaccinations in the last two months represents tangible progress on the one issue on which Biden’s first year will likely be mostly judged — the quest to revive a semblance of normal life.
“Now is not the time to let down our guard. If we all do our part, after a long, dark year, we can show once again that we are the United States of America. … We’re going to beat this pandemic,” Biden said in Ohio on Tuesday, striking the balance between caution and hope that has marked his management of the pandemic, which polls show wins the approval of a majority of Americans.