Biden Gains Upper Hands Over Xi Jinping With Senate Win

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Credit: Maria Thalassinou/ unsplash
  • Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Indonesia.
  • Assuming Ms. Cortez Masto’s victory, Mr. Biden will be able to appoint judges to the federal court system, including the Supreme Court.
  • Moreover, Republican efforts to reduce taxes or federal spending will be negotiated with Senate Democrats and the White House.

US President Joe Biden said he will enter an intense meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday with a stronger hand, following the re-election of Nevada Senator Catherine Cortez Masto.

Economies deteriorated

“I know I’m coming in stronger,” Mr. Biden said of the Xi meeting as he celebrated victory in Cambodia, where he is attending an Asian leaders summit.

On the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Indonesia, the two men will meet in person for the first time during Mr. Biden’s presidency.

Since Mr. Biden took office, the relationship between the world’s two largest economies has deteriorated due to economic competition, human rights concerns, and rising tensions between Beijing and Taiwan.

Midterm elections

“I know Xi Jinping, and he knows me,” Mr Biden said. “There is very little misunderstanding. We just need to figure out where the red lines are.”

Mr. Biden praised voter turnout in the midterm elections, telling reporters that Democratic victories are “a reflection of the quality of our candidates.” 

From Cambodia, he called Ms. Cortez Masto and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to express his congratulations.

Ms. Cortez Masto defeated Republican Adam Laxalt by less than one percentage point, and Mr. Laxalt is expected to file a recount.

Assuming Ms. Cortez Masto’s victory, Mr. Biden will be able to appoint judges to the federal court system, including the Supreme Court, and should have little difficulty appointing his preferred officials to positions throughout the government.

In his first two years, Mr. Biden confirmed 84 federal judges, including one Supreme Court justice.

Democrats and Republican

However, unless Democrats maintain control of the House, the President is unlikely to score any more legislative victories before running for re-election in 2024.

However, with allies in the Senate, Mr. Biden will not have to worry about using his veto pen to stop Republican attempts to ban abortion, block his regulations, or repeal climate and health measures he has already signed into law.

Moreover, Republican efforts to reduce taxes or federal spending will be negotiated with Senate Democrats and the White House.

The House is still up for grabs, with roughly 20 seats too close to call. Republicans need seven more victories to gain control of the House.

Mr. Biden stated that retaining House control is still “a stretch.”

Republican party

The Democratic performance defied pre-election expectations that voters would hand control of at least one chamber of Congress to the opposition party in a rebuke of the incumbent president and his policies. 

Instead, the election has been much closer, with voters rejecting scores of candidates backed by Mr. Trump in competitive races, including Mr. Laxalt, a rejection of the former president.

“The Republican Party will have to decide who they are,” Mr. Biden said.

After an upset victory late Saturday in Washington, Mr. Biden’s party remained within striking distance of retaining the House. 

Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez was expected to defeat Republican Joe Kent, a conservative ex-Green Beret who was endorsed by Trump and questioned Biden’s 2020 election legitimacy.

Majority

The Senate’s final composition is unknown. 

Georgia voters will go to the polls again next month in a runoff election. 

Democrats would have a 51-49 advantage if incumbent Senator Raphael Warnock retains his seat.

Mr. Biden stated that Democrats would have majorities in Senate committees responsible for clearing nominations with 51 senators, implying that the party would not be forced to spend valuable floor time on procedural votes to advance candidates.

“It’s just better,” he stated. “The higher the number, the better.”

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Source: The Straits Times

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