Biden stays out of sight while Trump runs a MAGA victory lap, both sending a message

Biden’s group introduced at 9:03 a.m. that he would make no appearances for the day. That was about an hour earlier than Trump launched what is likely to be his final journey as president with a blast of puffery and prevarication.

“We’re going to the southern border. As you know, we’ve completed the wall,” Trump stated falsely on the White House garden, his helicopter whirring behind him. “They may want to expand it. We have the expansion underway. It’s been tremendously successful, far beyond what anyone thought.”

Biden had answered a few questions from reporters Monday, after he received his second dose of the coronavirus vaccine.

He reiterated his hands-off stance to the Democratic-led efforts to power Trump from workplace within the wake of the mob assault final Wednesday, and he stated he’s assured he can safely take the oath of workplace open air on Jan. 20. The handover of energy will happen on the Capitol, website of the tried armed rebel in opposition to his election victory.

He shouldn’t be scheduled to look in public once more till Thursday and Friday, with occasions targeted on his twin plans for the financial and public well being responses to the coronavirus pandemic.

The incoming president owes his victory largely to a pledge to return the nation to predictable norms and to use science and energy to the combat the coronavirus, now raging at a file tempo at the same time as Americans start to get lifesaving vaccines.

“My number-one priority is getting vaccines in people’s arms as rapidly as we can,” Biden stated Monday, including that the present dying price, averaging greater than 3,000 Americans per day, is “beyond the pale.”

“It’s just wrong, and we can do a lot to change it,” Biden stated, specializing in a topic Trump has all however ignored since Election Day.

Biden appears decided to be the not-Trump, even on the threat of being a bystander to the waning days of the Trump Show. It was the identical apply he adopted throughout the marketing campaign, to evident success.

By remaining silent Tuesday, Biden was staying on message, stated Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, a political science professor on the University of Texas at Austin.

“He ran on being the adult,” she stated. “And what do adults do? They roll up their sleeves and get it done.”

Some Democrats would possibly favor to see Biden battling Trump level by level, however Biden is hewing to his intuition that extra folks need to transfer on, DeFrancesco Soto stated.

“If I were Biden, I would save my energy” for laws on immigration and different points he has pledged to deal with within the first 100 days of his time period, “as opposed to retorting whatever Trump is saying,” she stated.

“That’s a death spiral,” she stated. “If you have to respond to every false claim Trump says, you would use up every minute of the day.”

It was maybe becoming that Trump’s first foray outdoors the White House for the reason that mob assault could be a go to to the multibillion-dollar border wall mission wrought by the “Build that wall” chants he rode to workplace in 2016.

The wall will now most likely by no means be completed. Biden has vowed to not construct one other foot of it, and he’s underneath strain to formally kill off the mission with an government order on his first day in workplace.

It was additionally becoming that in some of his first in-person public remarks since he launched violent supporters towards the Capitol with the false assertion that the election had been stolen, Trump tried to deflect blame for the end result.

“People thought that what I said was totally appropriate,” Trump stated as he was about to board Air Force One. He then pivoted to social justice protests final summer time and a few of vandalism and violence that occurred then.

“And if you look at what other people have said, politicians at a high level, about the riots during the summer, the horrible riots in Portland and Seattle, in various other places,” Trump stated. “That was a real problem.”

Besides his assertion concerning the wall’s completion, Trump additionally falsely claimed there’s a “surge” of unlawful immigration, together with caravans bent on breaching the border, a declare he additionally made in 2018. About 450 miles of barrier have been constructed or rebuilt throughout a 2,000-mile expanse, the overwhelming majority being a strengthened model of fencing that existed earlier than Trump took workplace.

Part of the job of president is performative, one thing Trump at all times understood on a intestine stage even when he carried out badly. He performed the identical half Tuesday that he typically performed as president — half emcee, half people hero, half sufferer.

Visiting a part of flag-draped wall close to Alamo, Tex., Trump signed his title on a plaque and posed for footage with Border Patrol brokers. Songs from the Trump campaign-rally playlist performed as he celebrated, together with “YMCA” by the Village People, typically the closing quantity at Trump’s signature political occasions.

“We worked long and hard to get this done,” Trump stated of the wall. “They said it couldn’t be done, and we got it done.”

His speech veered between “Make America Great Again” best hits and makes an attempt to deal with the Capitol assault and the chance that he could also be punished for it in Congress, with asides on the pandemic and the actions taken by main expertise firms reminiscent of Twitter to mute him.

“Now is the time for our nation to heal, and it’s time for peace and for calm,” Trump stated. “Respect for law enforcement and the great people within law enforcement — so many are here — is the foundation of the MAGA agenda,” he stated. “We’re a nation of law, and we’re a nation of order.”

Biden aides stated Trump’s claims Tuesday will not be going unanswered. Vice President-elect Kamala D. Harris stated throughout a Univision interview Tuesday night that immigration will probably be “our first order of business.”

Asked about Trump’s assertions that his phrases earlier than the Capitol assault had been “totally appropriate,” Harris scoffed.

“That’s just not true,” Harris stated. “It’s simply not true.”

Chelsea Janes in Washington contributed to this report.

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