WASHINGTON (AP) — One spent the week at his house in Delaware rigorously making an attempt to construct a authorities and getting ready to tackle a pandemic.
The opposite largely saved to himself behind closed doorways at a largely empty White Home, angrily tweeting and utilizing his workplace and allies to attempt to subvert the outcomes of an American election in a harmful breach of democracy.
If the variations between President-elect Joe Biden and President Donald Trump weren’t already clear, the times for the reason that Nov. three election was determined have demonstrated the dramatically divergent methods wherein every approaches the job of commander in chief.
Trump has largely deserted governing, regardless of a pandemic that has now killed greater than 250,000 folks within the U.S. and is raging uncontrolled. He has rejected the outcomes of the election, concocted conspiracies that are actually believed by his most loyal supporters and refused to permit his authorities to take part within the peaceable transition of energy to the following administration whereas making an attempt to pressures state legislators and election officers to overturn the desire of the voters.
Denied the briefings, entry to businesses and funding which can be a part of a conventional transition, Biden has nonetheless tried to maneuver ahead. He has named senior employees, selected Cupboard members and tried to glean details about coverage and nationwide safety from former authorities officers and others, together with governors, who’ve labored with the Trump present administration.
On the White Home, the West Wing was largely empty, with few staffers and little of the hustle and bustle usually seen within the tight warren of places of work earlier than the election and earlier than one more COVID-19 outbreak.
The circle across the president has grown smaller in current weeks. Staffers who usually would leap on the likelihood to set foot within the Oval Workplace now attempt to keep away from it for concern of crossing a temperamental president who has been angrily demanding solutions from aides as to the right way to additional contest the election.
Even his private legal professional, Rudy Giuliani, has been pressured to avoid the White Home after the previous New York mayor’s son, a White Home staffer, introduced he had examined optimistic for the virus. Rudy Giuliani has has taken over the president’s authorized efforts to contest the election, regardless of a scarcity of proof behind these challenges.
Trump snapped at aides when he was instructed that Giuliani and the remainder of his authorized crew couldn’t meet on the White Home on Friday after they, too, had been uncovered. And he complained to confidants that Giuliani had embarrassed himself throughout a Thursday information convention when what gave the impression to be hair dye dripped down Giuliani’s sweating face as he asserted falsehood after conspiratorial falsehood in regards to the outcomes.
The Trump West Wing, by no means a well-oiled machine, was even much less organized than common.
Staffers within the press workplace, who management the White Home briefing room, discovered from reporters on Thursday that the coronavirus job pressure, led by Vice President Mike Pence, had scheduled a briefing there.
Trump lastly made an look Friday to debate prescription drug costs — an occasion he had demanded, to push again towards the storyline that he was in hiding. However he once more skirted reporters’ questions, as he has for greater than two weeks now.
Simply past the White Home gates, development continues on the stands from which spectators will watch the inauguration parade in honor of President-elect Joe Biden in January.
Nearly two hours’ drive away, in Delaware, Biden centered on the enterprise of governing slightly than social media or baseless claims of voter fraud. It was his second full week as president-elect.
Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris gathered every day at a makeshift transition headquarters at a theater in downtown Wilmington the place they held a sequence of digital conferences.
They met with enterprise and labor leaders Monday, nationwide safety specialists Tuesday, front-line well being care staff Wednesday, governors Thursday and the 2 strongest Democrats in Congress on Friday, Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Chief Chuck Schumer.
“It was extra of an info gathering assembly. They didn’t put forth any insurance policies or say, ‘That is what we wish to change,’” mentioned GOP Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland, who participated in Thursday’s name that was centered on the coronavirus. “They had been largely listening mode.”
Certainly, the conversations, in line with folks acquainted with their contents, had been centered virtually solely on the pandemic and the way the Biden administration may attempt to cease the exponential unfold of the illness instantly after his Jan. 20 inauguration — and even earlier than.
Biden repeatedly known as on congressional leaders to finish their stalemate and move a sweeping COVID-19 aid invoice by 12 months’s finish.
Whereas at house, he was in common contact with a small group of senior aides, together with newly appointed chief of employees Ron Klain, to start the difficult strategy of filling key administration posts. By Thursday, he had finalized his decide for treasury secretary. By Friday, he had introduced greater than a dozen senior White Home hires.
He additionally made a sequence of thank-you calls to members of the disparate factions of the Democratic Social gathering who had helped obtain his victory and whose continued assist will probably be crucial to rallying People behind his agenda.
Biden didn’t fully ignore Trump.
Biden answered questions throughout two transient information conferences throughout the week, and each occasions, he condemned the Republican president’s unprecedented push to dam his transition. However even in his criticism, Biden centered on the problem of governing.
He mentioned Thursday that Trump’s intransigence was “one other incident the place he’ll go down in historical past as being one of the irresponsible presidents in American historical past.”
“Let me select my phrases right here. I believe they’re witnessing unbelievable irresponsibility, extremely damaging messages being despatched to the remainder of the world about how democracy features,” he instructed reporters.
Requested what he would say to folks involved about Trump’s push to undermine the election, Biden had a easy message: “Grasp on. I’m on my method.”