President-elect Joe Biden appeared on television last week as a bipartisan group of lawmakers huddled in an undisclosed location to protect them from a violent mob that was ransacking the U.S. Capitol.
“The whole room went silent,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a Minnesota Democrat, recalled as everyone listened to Biden denounce the insurrection and call for calm.
The respectful manner in which the lawmakers listened to Biden during one of America’s darkest moments gave Klobuchar hope that the new President has an opportunity to guide the country past the tumultuous final stretch of Donald Trump’s presidency.
That’s quickly becoming one of Biden’s top tasks as he prepares to take office on Jan. 20. It’s an immensely complex challenge, requiring him to balance demands for accountability after Trump incited the riot against those who worry about further dividing the country.
Any misstep could not only intensify the nation’s polarization, but threaten Biden’s ability to win quick congressional approval of his Cabinet picks and other priorities such as coronavirus response legislation.
For now, Biden seems content to leave decisions about Trump’s fate to Congress.
“What the Congress decides to do is for them to decide,” Biden told reporters