Joe Biden achieved one of his most important objectives the instant he said “So help me God” and became America’s chief executive. To the relief of his supporters and his country, he ended the presidency of Donald Trump.
During Biden’s first 100 days in office, the spotlight has rightly been focused on the remarkable list of substantive accomplishments racked up by the new president and his team.
The scope and impact of their de-Trumpification of the government certainly deserves a place on that list given the former president’s toxicity and the active danger he posed to American democracy, our institutions, our well-being and our standing in the world.
That said, for all they have achieved, much of the work of de-Trumpification remains.
No one should make the mistake of thinking that just because the man is out of office, the dangers associated with him are fully behind us.
Beyond simply not being Trump, Biden’s active de-Trumpification agenda has taken many forms. This did include a thorough cleaning of the White House. But it has also encompassed a thorough and ongoing house cleaning in the U.S. government.
Biden has known from Day One that personnel is policy. Installing 1,000 members of his team within the first week of the administration was key, as was getting his full Cabinet team approved faster than Trump or Barack Obama did. Equally key, Biden has made sure that his people were high quality and that they understood fixing what was broken under Trump was a top priority.
According to a study by The American Presidency Project, Biden has promulgated more executive orders than Trump, Obama or George W. Bush since taking office — 40 compared with 25, 19 and 11 respectively. Beyond that, many of Biden’s orders have been focused on undoing Trump actions.
Nineteen have revoked Trump actions, and since some of his executive orders actually undid more than one Trump measure, the total “prior orders revoked” is 62. That is more than double the total number of such reversals under Trump, Obama and Bush.