The US: a new start with Joe Biden?
On Saturday, the election results were finally clear enough for Joe Biden to celebrate victory in his hometown of Wilmington (Delaware). In his victory speech, Biden stressed his intention to be president for all US citizens - including those who did not vote for him. Most of Europe's press voices believe the Democrat has the potential to unite the divided country.
Victim rhetoric has had its day
The NZZ am Sonntag hopes that citizens of all camps and classes can identify with Biden's survivor biography:
“In the US today - more than elsewhere - in both political camps a kind of moral superiority is drawn from the victim status that makes a reasonable conversation impossible. ... Nevertheless the election of the 77-year-old promises a quiet hope. He came to the polls as a reconciler, and despite all his weaknesses he embodies the trait that has helped the country emerge from crises in the past. As a man who has pulled himself together again after severe blows of fate (he lost his first wife and two children) and political defeats, he is the counter-model to Trump's narcissistic victim rhetoric.”
New president must build bridges
When Biden and Harris talk about healing America's soul it's important, Berlingske writes:
“But this must go beyond fine words. Biden and Harris must show that they will not be led by the nose by the left wing Democrats but reach out to the more than 70 million voters who voted for Trump. They must take the problems and opinions of these people seriously and show this with concrete political action. In this context, it would not be a bad thing if the Senate remained under Republican control. This will force them to work together to deliver real results, which unfortunately have not been seen in Washington for decades. Only by fundamentally changing these conditions can Biden turn the distrust of the system into new trust.”
Trump goes, his fans remain
Trump may have lost his power, but his ideology will survive, fears Večernji list:
“Even if Trump were to decide to withdraw completely, 'Trumpism' will live on. A mixture of economics, racism, political incorrectness, raw passions, violence and longing for the past and its traits are deeply engraved in the American people. Be they white working class men who thought their voice was no longer heard, or immigrants, particularly from Latin America, who applauded when he separated children from their parents and called for stricter controls, or those who saw him as a safeguard against the socialism from which they had fled. ... The country is divided and more nervous than ever before.”
A little revolution, please!
Writing in in La Stampa, philosopher Massimo Cacciari calls for less reserve in dealing with undemocratic tendencies:
“Populist demagogy is not defeated by negotiating with its representatives, but by taking up and fighting the issues that led them to victory, using a diametrically opposed strategy. ... What is needed now is a New Deal reached among the entire democratic West. If it is not put in place quickly and credibly, the Trumps will return, just as they did after the Obamas. ... Will Biden, the conservative Biden, understand that the time has come for him too to be at least a little 'revolutionary'? Does Harris's election demonstrate this intention? Those who care about Europe and the development of its democracy should hope so.”
A return to cooperation
Iltalehti is confident that Washington will now be far more open to political opponents and negotiating partners both at home and abroad:
“US President-elect Joe Biden's political guidelines come as a relief to many of the US's allies. ... Unlike Trump, who relied on bilateral relations, Biden's US will recognise the EU as an institution - and as a key partner. ... It won't be easy for Biden to unite the people. But he has good prerequisites for advancing a policy of cooperation. His long political career and good personal relationships across party lines are a boon to him in that regard.”