I completely expect the following in the next 109 days:
- New Green Deal - with the makeup of the senate and de facto president and senate majority leader Joe Manchin, you can rest assured the boogeyman “green new deal” isn’t going to actually happen, full stop. But the GOP will brand absolutely anything Biden or a democratic congress proposes that relates to the economy, energy, jobs, etc., as “an attempt to ram through a radical green new deal”. Even infrastructure spending. You can take that to the bank.
- Student Loan Forgiveness (albeit they'll start small under the guise of helping poor students and students of color) - I would expect something like $10k in a Covid relief bill. Beyond that I would expect nothing other than some modest reforms to the student loan framework.
- Push to revamp the ACA (Obamacare) and using COVID as their reasoning to provide a more "robust" healthcare service to all Americans - no need to use Covid as a reason but it will add to it. They’ll use the pending Supreme Court case and the party platform from the past 3 cycles to re-implement a watered down version of the individual mandate and add a Medicaid buy-in option. Probably a few other less headline-worthy tweaks.
- Additional lockdowns and regulations in the name of public health and "welfare" - I actually doubt this. But we’ll see. I would expect Covid response to largely focus on vaccine rollout and use of the bully pulpit.
- A new Paris Accord - not a “new” one. Just rejoining the existing one by executive action. I’d expect this in the first 48-72 hours.
- Dissolving some of the agreements Trump has made with various Middle East countries in an effort to better "control" Iran's nuclear ambitions. - The Trump agreements were mostly toothless so I doubt they’ll be rescinded. I think you can expect talks or re-upping the JCPOA since pulling out of it has corresponded with Iran reaccelerating its nuclear program.
- More war in Syria... and more "war/military intervention" in general - take a quick look at the documented history of the Obama-Biden administration. Biden tended to be the voice against military intervention - from the Afghanistan surge to the Bin Laden raid. He’s put career diplomats at CIA and State. It seems he feels quite bit-in-the-ass by his Iraq vote. The question is whether or not he was playing a role of devil’s advocate during the Obama admin. I suspect not and actually predict his foreign affairs will be heavy on diplomacy and light on hard power.
- Removal of some, not all, of Trump's tariffs. Specifically, I expect the Chinese tariffs to be removed while some of the ones applied to Canadian goods, like lumber, to remain in place. - I don’t follow this issue very closely and offer no educated guess.
- New round of regulations on business, especially those of us that operate on the internet in concert with policies written by the big tech companies (to hinder competition) who already have representatives working on Biden's transition team. I think you can bet on increased regulations.
Those will be the highlights.
Added my thoughts in response to yours, in red. A few other things I think happen fast:
- Infrastructure bill as both stimulus and outreach to republicans. Though I suspect it goes the way of most bipartisan outreach in the Obama days—nowhere, save for a few pieces crammed through a budget bill in reconciliation processes
- Minimum wage hike. Dems will open at $15 and GOP at like $10 over 3 years. Settle around $11.50 over 5-6 years. The left will flip out.
- I would also expect significant rollback of Trump era regulations across the board: EPA, Education, and Labor, specifically. Two examples:
The recent independent contractor classification final rule out of DOL will he rapidly challenged in court and they will start the rule making process under the APA.
Education will quickly announce new rule making for Title IX at colleges and universities. I suspect they may first launch a process just for rescission and follow that with a second process for new rule making.
- I think DC statehood, but not PR will be much discussed but never go anywhere.