Politics

Biden To Sign Record Number Of Executive Orders

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Michael Ginsberg General Assignment Reporter
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President Joe Biden is expected to issue a wide array of executive orders as soon as he takes office Wednesday.

The practice has become a common one in recent administrations. Donald Trump issued six executive orders during his first week in office, while Barack Obama issued five, according to AL.com. Biden will sign 15 executive orders on his first day in office, his incoming press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters.

Biden’s executive orders will focus in particular on the COVID-19 pandemic, immigration, and the environment.

COVID-19

Biden will institute a mask and social distancing mandate for all federal buildings, according to CBS News. The federal government would probably not have the authority to issue a nationwide mask mandate, which Biden alluded to on the campaign trail. Biden will also be rejoining the World Health Organization (WHO), the Associated Press reported. Trump ordered the United States’ withdrawal from the WHO after the international body refused “to demonstrate its independence from the Chinese Communist Party.” (RELATED: World Health Organization Pledges Not To Find ‘Guilty’ Party During Coronavirus Investigation In China)

Biden also plans multiple economic orders that he claims are necessary due to the pandemic. He will prevent people making less than $99,000 a year from being evicted from rental properties, according to Forbes. This would cover more than 75% of all American earners, according to Statista. Biden will also order the Treasury Department not to collect publicly held student loans until September 2021.

Immigration

Biden will repeal the national emergency declaration that Trump instituted along the United States’ southern border with Mexico, according to Bloomberg. That declaration, which allowed Trump to move money to fund his border wall, received bipartisan rebuke in the Senate, but was not blocked. Biden will also be ending construction of the wall, according to CNBC. Trump’s travel ban, which prevents immigration from Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen, survived a 2018 Supreme Court challenge. Biden’s executive orders will be accompanied by an immigration bill that, if passed by Congress, could grant millions of illegal immigrants permanent residency and a path to citizenship. That proposal has already been criticized by Republicans.

Environment

Biden will end construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, a move that Canadian authorities suggested would kill jobs on both sides of the border.

He will also rejoin the Paris Climate Accords, according to The Hill. That agreement requires the United States to have net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Biden is also expected to increase the size of multiple national parks, a move Native American groups have endorsed.