Over the weekend, both the new president-elect and his wife, now the first lady of the United States of America, settled in the White House and the rest of his family.
Some staff members spoke words of appreciation for the new air. Some comments such as “It is the honeymoon period where everything feels new” and “The residence has life again” were heard for a few hours.
According to reports, there were some movie marathons in the White House’s interior cinema, animated by the sandwiches prepared by the cooks. Some of Biden’s five grandchildren scampered and crowded into the seats to watch. Some internal sources revealed this and ensured that all these activities were carried out while respecting pandemic precautionary measures. Even the use of masks was maintained at all times.
The arrival of the dogs waiting in Delaware, until the family unpacked and settled in, took place on Sunday. This wait was made so that the dogs, two German Shepherds, could have a much more comfortable entry into what will be their new home, at least for the next four years.
“Champ is enjoying his new dog bed by the fireplace, and Major loved running around the South Lawn,” the White House said in a news release Monday morning. Champ had already enjoyed his stay in Washington, cohabiting the vice president’s residence when Biden was in the Obama administration officials. For his part, the mayor was adopted from a Delaware state pet rescue center in 2018.
The narrow streets of Georgetown were jammed due to countless caravan vehicles. During the wait, Hunter, one of Biden’s grandchildren, ran to buy a bagel at Call Your Mother, one of the most popular deli stores.
Biden visited a DC restaurant on the fifth day of his presidency, thus bonding, anticipating the mark left by former President Trump of not visiting restaurants. The previous president very rarely ate outside the White House’s perimeter, and the few times that he did, he only visited the restaurant of his hotel.
However, amid all the celebration events and protocol meetings, the participants observed and preserved the stricter precautionary measures to avoid contagion. “The family was good,” said employees about the Biden’s respect for social distancing and the use of masks.
“All employees are masked, especially when they are close to family,” said one of the residence staff members, stating that family members only remove their masks once they are on the second floor. They find the personal rooms. He also stated that most of the workers, including ushers, butlers, housekeepers, and cooks, have received the first round of vaccinations, and some others have already received the second dose.
The First Retreat at the Presidential Residence
The residence’s internal source has stated that the staff continues to operate normally. The only notable event so far is the White House chief usher’s departure. Timothy Harleth, was employed by Trump since he was hired by former first lady Melania Trump in 2017. According to sources, his departure occurred on inauguration day. This measure was initiated by a senior official in the Biden administration before the family’s arrival.
Generally, White House staff members remain in office despite the change in administration. However, this would not be the case for Harleth, since he was openly affiliated with the Trump family, since he previously held the Trump Hotel manager position in Washington.
White House staff are working as they always have, although the departure of Trump’s boss and employee Timothy Harleth was a relevant event. His connection with the outgoing administration was evident. It contradicted the rules governing the White House staff, although some sources say that he tried to carry out some maneuvers to keep his position, without success.
One of the former White House officials said he was not well-liked by the staff and had disagreements with Trump’s social secretary. In her place, Katie Hinson, the former president’s deputy chief usher administration, went on to manage Harleth’s old office, at least until the first lady appoints a new chief usher.
During Biden’s early days in the White House, changes are already manifesting. Some measures are already being taken into consideration to be executed in the following days. Some of the projects approved by the old administration, many of them in process, will be repealed in the coming days.
First, it is proposed to stop the construction of the border wall. The national emergency declared by Trump, which allowed him to divert funds’ to finance the wall’s construction, will be repealed immediately.
The intention is also to return to the Paris agreement to combat climate change and suspend the WHO’s United States’ departure.
As a measure to combat the economic ravages of the pandemic, Biden intends to extend the deadline until March 31 for the evictions of those who cannot pay their rents. The measure is also extendable to mortgage and student loans.
The Muslim veto has also been repealed in this administration. The veto prevented travelers from the eleven countries of the Muslim faith from entering the country.
Another measure is the cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline’s construction as part of the plan against climate change proposed during his campaign period.
Support for the DACA program is also among the Biden administration’s first measures. The cessation of deportations and the government’s commitment to regularize the immigration status of some 650,000 undocumented immigrants who have lived in the country since they were children and who are known as “dreamers.” In this same sense, Liberians will have their share of help by suspending deportations and work permits for refugees from that country.
He also ordered the review of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) priorities, which Trump ordered expanded for immigration detention. He also proposed a new census of undocumented immigrants.
These are just some of the measures Joe Biden has announced for his first day as head of state. Some of them have already been signed and in the application process.