What Has Joe Biden Accomplished So Far as the U.S. President?

Mohit Oberoi, CFA - Author
By

Aug. 31 2022, Updated 1:53 p.m. ET

U.S. President Joe Biden has completed over 19 months in the White House. His presidential campaign was charged-up and polarizing. Biden's tenure has been among the most difficult among recent U.S. presidents. Let’s analyze what Biden has accomplished throughout his tenure.

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When Biden assumed the presidency, the U.S. economy and the stock markets were on an upswing and recovering from the blows of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it wasn’t going to be an easy journey for any president. The tough geopolitical environment hasn't made things easy for Biden.

Biden’s performance on the economy has been satisfactory.

In July, there were 528,000 new jobs added to the economy, and the unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent. Inflation rates slightly slipped to 8.5 percent last month, but consumer prices rose 6.3 percent. Inflation is expected to increase in August.

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Biden delivered on the climate change promise.

Biden delivered on the climate change promise and rejoined the Paris Climate deal. The administration made several other decisions to promote the adoption of green energy and also mandated converting the federal fleet to zero-emission vehicles.

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The infrastructure bill finally passed.

The $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill also finally passed under Biden. While former President Donald Trump delivered on several of his promises, his infrastructure plans never saw the light of day. The infrastructure bill has also proposed a massive outlay for EV (electric vehicle) charging stations, which would help increase the adoption of electric cars.

The administration’s performance on COVID-19 vaccinations has also been satisfactory even though the country grappled with vaccine hesitancy.

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Biden has been working on foreign policy.

As Biden pledged, he has been working towards restoring trust among allies. The administration waived the Section 232 tariffs on Europe, which were a major bone of contention between the two sides. Also, Biden’s stance on China has been strong. While you might miss the frequent tweets from Trump, Biden has also been strong on China.

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Another notable achievement of Biden’s foreign and strategic policy is the strengthening of QUAD, which includes the U.S., India, Australia, and Japan. Biden also invited Taiwan to the December 2021 Democracy Summit, at the cost of China’s angst. He even helped organize a U.S. representative to visit Taiwan. He tried to reach out to Russia but Russian President Vladimir Putin went ahead with his invasion of Ukraine.

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What are Biden's notable achievements?

Biden’s cabinet has been diverse racially, which is an achievement. The administration revamped the PSLF (Public Service Loan Forgiveness), which was long overdue.

Biden issued a student loan relief program, where all eligible federal student loan borrowers will have $10,000 worth of debt canceled. While there's still billions worth of loan debt in the country, Biden somewhat fulfilled his promise that he would eliminate student loan debt.

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Biden took strong actions against Russia.

The Biden administration imposed several sanctions on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. In coordination with Western allies, the U.S. imposed crippling sanctions on Russia, which made the country the most sanctioned nation in the world, even ahead of North Korea and Iran.

While the U.S. hasn't sent troops to fight with Russia, Biden has used the crisis to strengthen NATO. The Biden administration has also supported Ukraine with military aid, which has helped the country fight invading Russian troops.

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Biden took the unprecedented step of releasing oil from the Strategic Oil Reserves.

The Biden administration took the unprecedented step of releasing 180 million barrels of oil from the country's Strategic Oil Reserves. The oil has been gradually been released throughout these last few months and should help in bringing down the high oil prices that U.S. consumers are battling.

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Also, Biden hasn't been able to take the entire global community onboard in criticizing Russia. For example, India, which is a key U.S. ally, has refrained from voting against Russia at the UN. The country has also scaled up its purchases of Russian oil, much to the dislike of the Biden administration.

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Biden hasn’t been able to do much about rising inflation. He tried cajoling OPEC+ to increase output but wasn’t successful. The administration hasn’t been able to move forward on the Iran Nuclear Deal, which could help add more barrels of oil to global markets.

Overall, Biden’s tenure as president has been the proverbial "glass half full, half empty." Whether you find the glass half empty or half full depends on which side of the political divide you belong to.

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