Administration

Biden signs first executive actions as president

President Biden signed his first executive actions on Wednesday afternoon, hours after being sworn in as the 46th commander in chief.

Biden, wearing a mask while seated at the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office, signed executive actions mandating mask use on federal property to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, rejoining the Paris climate agreement and extending support for underserved communities.

“I thought there’s no time to wait. Get to work immediately,” Biden told reporters. “There’s no time to start like today.”

The executive actions were among 15 items that Biden signed Wednesday on his first day in office, White House press secretary Jen Psaki later told reporters.

The actions represent an effort by Biden to turn a page on the administration of his predecessor, former President Trump, by reversing some of his more controversial policy moves, including the exit from the Paris climate accord.

On Wednesday, Biden also signed an order reversing Trump’s effort to withdraw from the World Health Organization in the midst of the pandemic, reversing Trump’s travel ban on majority-Muslim nations, rolling back regulatory reversals to safeguard the environment. Biden also sought to deliver relief to those impacted by the coronavirus pandemic by extending a pause on student loan payments and moratoriums on evictions and foreclosures. 

In total, Biden is expected to sign 53 executive actions over the next 10 days across the areas of the economy, climate, health care and immigration, according to a document outlining a schedule for his forthcoming moves that was obtained by The Hill.

The executive actions represented some of Biden’s first official acts as president after being sworn in at the U.S. Capitol earlier Wednesday afternoon. He also issued a proclamation declaring Wednesday a National Day of Unity.

Tags Donald Trump Jen Psaki Joe Biden

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File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

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In this photo released by the Governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev telegram channel, a rescuer gestures as he helps people during an evacuation after storm and flooding in Sevastopol, Crimea, Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. A storm in the Black Sea took down power grids and left almost half a million people without power after it flooded roads, ripped up trees and damaged buildings in Crimea, Russian state news agency Tass said. (Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev's telegram channel via AP)
In this photo released by the Governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev telegram channel, a rescuer gestures as he helps people during an evacuation after storm and flooding in Sevastopol, Crimea, Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. A storm in the Black Sea took down power grids and left almost half a million people without power after it flooded roads, ripped up trees and damaged buildings in Crimea, Russian state news agency Tass said. (Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev's telegram channel via AP)

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