US Election 2020: What is presidential transition and what Biden’s team has done so far?
US President-elect Joe Biden is gearing up for the inauguration ceremony expected to be held on January 20, 2021, despite President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede defeat. Amid the ongoing controversy, Biden has assembled a group called transition team, responsible for ensuring a smooth transfer of power between the Trump-Pence administration and the incoming Biden-Harris administration.
What is presidential transition?
The presidential transition is a period between the conclusive election result and the start of the new presidential term, which begins, as per the US Constitution, from January 20 at noon. The President- and Vice President-elect will take an oath of office in Washington DC, which will be administered by the Supreme Court chief justice. The transition team is preparing to help Biden and Kamala Harris meet the urgent challenges facing the United States on Day One.
“A Biden-Harris administration, propelled by the foundation laid by the transition, will lead a just and equitable recovery that rebuilds a strong, inclusive middle class and builds an economy for the future,” reads the transition website set up by Biden’s team.
Announcements by transition team
The transition team will select personnel to serve under Biden-Harris administration, determine policy implementation steps, and develop management agendas for federal agencies. The team has already announced the appointment of Ron Klain as the next White House Chief of Staff and Assistant to the President. Klain has served as “Ebola czar” under the Obama-Biden administration and his appointment suggests that coronavirus response remains the utmost priority for the incoming administration.
Biden is expected to soon start announcing the names of people he wants in his cabinet, including heads of all the key departments and agencies. However, many of Biden’s picks for top government posts have to be confirmed by US Senate after they will get interviewed by Senate committees and vote for approval or rejection.
Apart from naming White House chief of staff, the transition team announced the formation of the Transition COVID-19 Advisory Board, comprised of leading public health experts to advise the administration. The Biden-Harris Transition has also announced key members of the agency review teams (ARTs), responsible for evaluating the operations of the federal agencies.
“We must be prepared for a seamless transfer of knowledge to the incoming administration to protect our interests at home and abroad. The agency review process will help lay the foundation for meeting these challenges on Day One,” Senator Ted Kaufman, Co-Chair, Biden-Harris Transition, said in a statement.