Joe Biden’s First Executive Orders


Melanie Diaz, Contributor

President Joe Biden wasted no time in making and changing executive orders. On his first day alone, he made a total of 17 executive acts ranging from mask mandates to immigration policies.

Although it would be legally implausible to mandate citizens to wear masks all over the nation, Biden enforced the usage of masks and social distancing in all federal buildings. Also starting a “100 day mask challenge”, asking citizens to wear their masks for 100 days straight. Previously, President Donald Trump had publicly down-played the spread  and effect of COVID-19, which I believe was fairly dangerous to the citizens of the United States. 

As the spread of COVID-19 continues to increase, it is better to be safe than sorry. This executive order is reassuring to those who want to be healthy and cautious. Without being a legal obligation, it seems to be a simple way to try and prevent the spread of the coronavirus. 

Joe Biden also signed an executive order to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord. Previously revoked by former president Donald Trump, due the fear of economical disadvantages, Biden rejoined in hopes to limit global warming. 

In correlation, President Biden decided to cancel the transportation of oil through the Keystone XL pipeline. Since 2010, the pipeline has leaked and spilled 21 times, causing harmful damage to the environment around it. 

With this executive order specifically, came a lot of backlash, causing disagreement from the Canadian prime minister. The order caused a loss of around 1,000 jobs to those working with the pipeline. This seems quite problematic since it has caused damage to the environment, however a large quantity of people are no longer working. The spills are usually cleaned up with urgency and since so many people no longer have an income, I believe there should have been a better and more thought out solution to this issue.0

Immigration policies include the reinforcement of DACA. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals protects accepted immigrant youth from deportation and allows them to be eligible for a work visa and schooling. Allowing minors to continue to study and work without the fear of being incarcerated and deported. 

The Trump administration had tried to terminate DACA, however the 5-4 supreme court ruling rebuked that. Now that Biden has allowed the continuation and enforcement of DACA, the hundreds of thousands of young immigrants continue to reside here. With all the issues of immigration, this executive order, personally, seems justified. Enforcing the stay of these young people, who are specifically studying and working.  

President Biden also extended the pause for student loans. Those with federal student loans are given until September 30th to be postponed from their payments temporarily. With the outbreak of COVID-19 causing limited financial resources, this adjourn allows those to pay as much of the loans as they feel needed without any legal commitment. With this mandate, it allows people who have debt to slowly recover from it. Although it will not lessen the debt, many people who struggle with money will now be able to recuperate. 

0Joe Biden has signed over 25 executive orders and continues to do so since his inauguration. He is continuously working on the topics of the environment, equity, and health regulations in the United States.