The candidacies put forward by the future 46th President of the United States pave the way for a joint administration, diversified and in which several leaders would be pioneers. Appointments that embody a change in tone and image, but above all in vision and priorities.
Insisting on the urgent challenges posed by the pandemic and a weakened economy, Joe Biden indicated that his collaborators would be ready to govern
since the first day.
The governmental experience, acquired in particular in the administration of Barack Obama, is moreover one of the guidelines behind the choice of candidates, to the point where many even speak of a
Obama third term. Several also have long-standing ties to the president-elect.
The progressives would have liked to be better represented and deplore the fact that there are not more new voices.
The majority of the nominations will require confirmation in the Senate, which will come under Democratic control shortly after the inauguration of Joe Biden, in the wake of the senatorial elections in Georgia, on January 5.
The family photos of the Biden and Trump administrations will be quite different.
Of the 24 people who will have Cabinet status, 12 would be women, if they get the approval of the Senate: a precedent in American history. For the first time too, there would be more people from visible minorities than whites.
However, some note the fact that a majority of the largest portfolios have been entrusted to white men.
VICE-PRESIDENT: KAMALA HARRIS (56 YEARS OLD)
- Senator for California (2017 to present)
- Attorney General of California (2011–2017)
Daughter of immigrants (an Indian mother and a Jamaican father), the former district attorney of San Francisco has broken down barriers throughout her career. This time, she will become the first woman, the first black and the first person of Asian origin to take up the vice-presidency.
She sits on several Senate committees, namely those for justice, intelligence, internal security and the budget.
Taking the example of his relationship with President Barack Obama at the time, Joe Biden indicated that Kamala Harris' voice would be
the first and the last to sound
in the room before important decisions.
The appointment of the vice-president, who was elected with him, does not need to be approved by the Senate.
Kamala Harris lived in Montreal during her teenage years. She was a friend of Joe Biden's eldest son, Beau, who died of cancer.
SECRETARY OF STATE: ANTONY BLINKEN (58)
- Deputy Secretary of State (2015–2017)
- National Security Advisor to Former Vice President Biden (2013–2015)
A longtime advisor to the president-designate, he was already his main collaborator when Joe Biden sat on the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs.
In addition to having extensive congressional experience, Antony Blinken, a lawyer, held various positions in the Democratic administrations of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, beginning his government career in the State Department.
Partisan of a collaborative approach, the new face of American diplomacy intends to re-establish bonds of trust with allied countries, damaged during the Trump years, and to preside over the return of the country to the agreements or international organizations from which the United States in recent years.
Anthony Blinken, who lived in Paris for much of his youth, speaks perfect French.
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ATTORNEY GENERAL: MERRICK GARLAND (68 years old)
- Judge, then Chief Justice of the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals (1997–2013, 2013-present)
- Senior Assistant Deputy Attorney General of the United States (1994–1997)
In the eyes of Democrats, Merrick Garland has been robbed of his place in the highest court in the country.
Barack Obama had appointed him to the Supreme Court in March 2016, but the leader of the Republican majority in the Senate, Mitch McConnell, refused to hold a vote on his confirmation, citing, at nine months of the presidential election, the deadline of ballot.
Citing his integrity, Republican senators then proposed his appointment as head of the FBI after the firing of James Comey by President Trump.
In the federal prosecutor's office, Merrick Garland has notably overseen the prosecution of far-right activist Timothy McVeigh, convicted of the Oklahoma City bombing that killed 168 people in 1995.
The magistrate, considered to be centrist, would take the head of a department which, in the opinion of several jurists, was politicized during the reign of the former Secretary of Justice Bill Barr.
SECRETARY TO THE TREASURE: JANET YELLEN (74 years old)
- Chairman of the Federal Reserve (2014–2018)
- Vice President of the Federal Reserve (2010–2014)
The first woman to chair the powerful Federal Reserve (Fed), she would also be the first to lead the US Treasury in its 231-year history, and the first person to have been, in her career, at the helm of the Council of Economic Advisers. , the Fed and the Treasury Department.
Its mission would be to turn around an economy weighed down by the COVID-19 crisis and marked by an unemployment rate of 6.7%, increase the federal minimum wage to $ 15 an hour and tax companies more. and the richest Americans.
Specializing in labor economics, the professor emeritus believes in the role of government in the economy. His long track record and track record reassure Wall Street as much as the progressive wing of the Democratic Party.
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SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: LLOYD AUSTIN (67 years old)
- Head of US Central Command, CentCom (2013–2016)
- Vice Chief of Staff of the United States Army (2012–2013)
The four-star general, who would be the first African-American to head the Pentagon, has often been a pioneer: he was for example the first black to command a division of the army, then the first to lead CentCom, the division of the military responsible for US operations in the Middle East.
He was the general commander of the American forces in Iraq when Joe Biden, then vice-president, was in charge of the Iraqi file.
The career soldier, who served in the military for four decades, is expected to convince Congress to waive a law prohibiting anyone who left the military less than seven years ago from leading the Pentagon, a precedent occurred twice in the past 70 years.
SECRETARY FOR INTERNAL SECURITY: ALEJANDRO MAYORKAS (61 years old)
- Assistant Secretary for Homeland Security (2013–2016)
- Director of Citizenship and Immigration Services in the United States (2009–2013)
At the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), he helped set up the program dubbed DACA, which temporarily protects young migrants from the deportation who arrived illegally in the United States when they were minors.
The DHS inspector general had also accused him of inappropriate intervention to help companies obtain work visas.
Of Cuban origin and arrived in the country as a child as a political refugee, the former federal prosecutor would be the first Spanish speaker, but also the first immigrant to lead the DHS.
SECRETARY FOR HEALTH AND SOCIAL SERVICES: XAVIER BECERRA (62 years old)
- California Attorney General (2017-present)
- Representative of California to the House of Representatives (1993–2017)
The son of Mexican immigrants, he would be the first Hispanic American to head the Department of Health and Human Services.
Public health officials were calling for a medical expert to head this department, and Xavier Becerra was seen more as a possible attorney general.
Mr Becerra, who has filed over 100 lawsuits against the Trump administration, is however at the forefront of important legal battles over health issues, such as the one waged by 20 states to keep the health insurance plan in place. in place by Barack Obama (nicknamed Obamacare), whom the Republicans are trying to dismantle.
He also led a coalition of 22 states challenging a Mississippi law that restricts access to abortion.
SECRETARY INSIDE: DEB HAALAND (60)
- District representative in New Mexico (2019 to present)
- President of the Democratic Party of New Mexico (2015–2017)
For the first time in American history, an Indigenous woman would sit in Cabinet. In addition, she would head the department responsible for many files relating to the 574 indigenous communities recognized by the federal government, between which relations have often been strained.
The department, which manages around one-fifth of the country's land, oversees natural resources, including on indigenous lands, among other things.
Deb Haaland is committed to making the department, largely focused on the development of fossil fuels, a promoter of renewable energies and policies against climate change.
Reelected in November, the politician, member of the Laguna Pueblo nation, is, among other things, vice-chair of the House of Representatives Committee on Natural Resources. In the 2018 election, she became one of the first two Indigenous women elected to Congress.
TRADE SECRETARY: GINA RAIMONDO (49 years old)
- Governor of Rhode Island (2015 to present)
- General State Treasurer (2011–2015)
Governor of Rhode Island, the smallest American state, Gina Raimondo has made economic development her main focus.
The former executive of a venture capitalist would be instrumental in restoring trade relations with the economic partners of the United States, which were damaged during the Trump era. It would also inherit other complex issues, such as the regulation of technological giants.
Conservative commentators were hoping Joe Biden would make this centrist politician his running mate. His pension reform, however, made him much less popular among the unions.
According to a recent poll, the president of the Association of Democratic Governors is one of the least popular governors in the country.
TRANSPORT SECRETARY: PETE BUTTIGIEG (38 years old)
- Mayor of South Bend, Indiana (2012–2020)
- Intelligence Officer in the US Navy Reserve (2009–2017)
The first openly gay candidate to seriously run for president, in 2019-2020, he would also be the first person from the LGBTQ community to sit in Cabinet after his Senate appointment was confirmed. This son of a Maltese immigrant would be the second youngest secretary in history.
His presence in the Biden Cabinet was largely predictable. Sent to Afghanistan in 2014, when he was a naval reservist and mayor, the veteran was however tipped to head the Department of Veterans Affairs. According to media reports, the young politician, who speaks eight languages, would have liked the post of ambassador to the UN.
If the Senate supports his appointment, his role in infrastructure development, focused on job creation and the fight against climate change, will be central to the implementation of Joe Biden's priorities.
mayor pete, he helped revitalize South Bend, a manufacturing town of 100,000 people.
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SECRETARY FOR ENERGY: JENNIFER GRANHOLM (61)
- Governor of Michigan (2003–2011)
- Michigan Attorney General (1999–2003)
The mission of the Department of Energy is largely focused on nuclear energy. But the choice of Jennifer Granholm, recognized for her commitment to renewable energies and the development of electric vehicles, signals Joe Biden's intentions.
The former governor of Michigan, the heart of the American auto industry, managed her state's response to the 2008 financial crisis. She also worked with the Obama administration to save the American auto industry, especially with Joe Biden, key player in the economic recovery plan.
Born in Vancouver, she would be the first cabinet member of Canadian origin.
SECRETARY FOR EDUCATION: MIGUEL CARDONA (45 years old)
- Connecticut Education Commissioner (2019-present)
- Assistant Professor of Education at the University of Connecticut (2015–2019)
Joe Biden had made experience in the public education system a selection criterion. After a school and university career in the public network, Miguel Cardona worked in the public system, notably as a primary school teacher, school principal, then assistant professor in a university.
The one who is called upon to take the reins of the Department of Education in the midst of the pandemic has pleaded for the reopening of schools.
Son of Puerto Ricans, Miguel Cardona notably had the support of the Spanish-speaking congressional caucus and unions in his state.
SECRETARY AT WORK: MARTY WALSH (53)
- Mayor of Boston (2014 to present)
- Representative to the Massachusetts Legislative Assembly (1997–2014)
The son of Irish immigrants, Martin Walsh inherited the Department of Labor at a pivotal time in the US economy, with 11 million Americans still out of work. In particular, he will be responsible for working conditions in companies.
The unions welcomed the appointment of who would be the first Secretary of Labor with experience as a union leader in nearly 50 years.
Supporter of the minimum wage of $ 15, he has to his credit several progressive achievements, for example in affordable housing or free education for low-income students in public schools.
Sober for 25 years and keen, the media say, to help those struggling with addictions, he drew attention at the 2016 Democratic convention by opening his speech with these words:
Good evening. My name is Marty Walsh, and I am an alcoholic.
SECRETARY FOR HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT: MARCIA FUDGE (68 years old)
- Ohio District Representative (2009 to present)
- Mayor of Warrensville Heights, suburb of Cleveland (2000–2008)
The one who was eyeing the Department of Agriculture lamented in an interview the fact that
the black person still inherits the Department of Labor or that of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) … just before being appointed head of the second.
A member of the House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture, she also seemed to be one of the most serious candidates to head the Department of Agriculture.
The former President of the Congressional Black Caucus is known for her work on civil rights and fair labor practices. She would be the first woman to head the HUD in over 40 years.
SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE: TOM VILSACK (70)
- Secretary of Agriculture in the Obama Cabinet (2009–2017)
- Governor of Iowa (1999–2007)
A veteran of politics, Joe Biden's ex-colleague is called upon to resume the role he played for eight years under the Obama administration, to the chagrin of progressives who would have preferred a revival.
Critics of Mr. Vilsack, chief executive of the American Dairy Exports Council since 2017, say he's too close to the farm lobby and big farm producers.
According to NPR, however, his candidacy was imposed as a compromise at the end of a fight between two rival wings of the Democratic Party, one supporting a traditional vision of the role of the department, the other advocating a reform around the programs. against hunger and the fight against climate change.
SECRETARY TO VETERANS AFFAIRS: DENIS MCDONOUGH (51 years old)
- Chief of Staff of the White House under Barack Obama (2013–2017)
- Deputy National Security Advisor (2010–2013)
During the Obama presidency, he assumed several roles on the Security Council, including that of acting chief of staff.
His appointment as number one in the Department of Veterans Affairs, which with one exception has always been led by a former military man, has disappointed groups of veterans.
The Biden team insists that he has regularly seen military personnel at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center as well as in Iraq and Afghanistan. He is familiar with government levers and knows how to manage bureaucratic obstacles, often pointed out in this department, she also notes.
CHIEF OF CABINET: RON KLAIN (59 years old)
- Chief of Staff to Vice Presidents Al Gore (1995–1999) and Joe Biden (2009–2011)
- White House Ebola Response Coordinator (2014–2015)
A veteran of democratic circles, he has advised several elected officials. A lawyer and former lobbyist, he has worked in all three branches of the federal government and masters the workings of both Congress and the White House.
The appointment of Ron Klain, whose experience in the fight against Ebola will be strategic, has been applauded by both progressives and moderates in the Democratic Party.
A long-time collaborator of Joe Biden, he was by his side when he was a senator, then vice-president, helping him for example to steer the economic recovery which followed the crisis of 2008, before being a key adviser. of his last presidential campaign.
Usually seen as the gatekeeper who controls access to the president, the chief of staff sets the president's political and legislative strategy and often liaises with the Capitol during negotiations related to bills. His appointment does not require confirmation from the Senate.
DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: AVRIL HAINES (51 years old)
- Deputy National Security Advisor (2015–2017)
- Deputy Director of the CIA (2013–2015)
After being the first female deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), she became the first to head National Intelligence (DNI), where she served as coordinator of 17 US intelligence agencies.
She began serving in the Obama administration in 2010, as legal counsel to the White House National Security Council.
With degrees in physics and law, she was deputy legal counsel to the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee when Joe Biden was chairman.
DIRECTOR OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY: MICHAEL REGAN (44 years old)
- Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (2017-present)
- Vice President for Clean Energy and Regional Director of the Environmental Defense Fund (2008–2016)
An expert in air quality, he worked for ten years at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the administrations of George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.
In his current role, Regan has made a name for himself by signing a multi-billion dollar deal with energy company Duke Energy to clean up coal ash and he created an Environmental Justice Advisory Council.
Mr Regan would obviously play a central role in making Joe Biden's environmental agenda a reality, who in addition to promising to fight climate change and embrace green energy, has pledged to fight environmental racism.
PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL OF ECONOMIC ADVISERS OF THE PRESIDENT: CECILIA ROUSE (57 years old)
- Dean of the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University (2012-present)
- Member of the Council of Economic Advisers (2009–2011)
She would be the first African-American to hold this post. In addition to having previously served on the Council she is called upon to lead, the Princeton economist also served on the National Economic Council in the Clinton administration.
Specializing in labor economics and education, the academic has already insisted on the urgency of the government's economic response to the pandemic.
Joe Biden intends to restore to this position the status of member of the Cabinet that Donald Trump had withdrawn from him.
DIRECTOR OF THE MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET OFFICE (OMB): NEERA TANDEN (50 years old)
- CEO and President of the Center for American Progress (2011 to present)
- Advisor to the Secretary of Health and Social Services Kathleen Sebelius (2009–2010)
Neera Tanden has decades of experience in policy making, including in the Clinton administration, and is one of the architects of Obamacare.
Daughter of Indian immigrants, she would be the first woman from an ethnic minority to head the OMB and one of the few women to have led it.
But his scathing tweets against some Republican senators cast serious doubt on whether his appointment would be confirmed,
most controversial of Cabinet Biden, according to the NPR network. The longtime Hillary Clinton adviser, at the helm of a progressive think tank, has also often crossed swords on Twitter with the camp and supporters of Bernie Sanders.
SALES REPRESENTATIVE: KATHERINE TAI (46 years old)
- Advisor, then Senior Legal Advisor to the Trade Ways and Means Committee (2014–2017, 2017 to present)
- Chief Advisor for China Trade Enforcement in the Office of the Attorney General of the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) (2007–2014)
Specializing in free trade issues, the lawyer of Taiwanese origins has held various positions within the USTR, with particular expertise in trade relations with China.
Considered a skilled negotiator, she played a crucial role in improving the Canada – United States – Mexico (CUSMA) Agreement, which came into effect last summer. After the deal was struck between the three countries, Democrats managed to include tougher labor and environmental provisions.
Ms. Tai, who speaks Mandarin, would become the first Asian American and the first visible minority woman to hold the post.
DIRECTOR OF THE AGENCY RESPONSIBLE FOR SMALL ENTERPRISES (SBA): ISABEL GUZMAN (49 years old)
- Director of the Small Business Protector in the Office of the Governor of California (2019-present)
- Advisor to emerging companies (2017–2019)
In her current position, Isabel Guzman helps coordinate her state's economic recovery plan in the wake of the pandemic. She was an entrepreneur, previously worked in a commercial bank and advised start-up companies.
The one who previously worked in the SBA as an advisor and deputy chief of staff during the Obama years would manage, among other things, the small business loan program, particularly crucial in this period linked to the COVID-19 crisis.
UNITED STATES AMBASSADOR TO THE UN: LINDA THOMAS-GREENFIELD (68)
- Deputy Secretary of State in the Office of African Affairs at the Department of State (2013–2017)
- Directrice générale du service diplomatique et directrice des ressources humaines du département d'État (2012-2013)
Diplomate de carrière, elle a représenté les États-Unis sur quatre continents pendant 35 ans avant d'être poussée vers la sortie par l'administration Trump. Plusieurs responsables du département d'État interviewés par ABC News l'ont décrite comme une mentore.
Se distinguant de son prédécesseur, Joe Biden a indiqué que le poste d'ambassadeur à l'ONU serait de nouveau assorti du statut de membre du Cabinet.
Le président sera entouré de plusieurs personnes qui n'ont pas le statut de membre de Cabinet (et ne nécessitent pas l'approbation du Sénat), mais qui n'en joueront pas moins un rôle essentiel. En voici quelques-unes :
PORTE-PAROLE DE LA MAISON-BLANCHE : JEN PSAKI (42 ans)
- Directrice des communications de la Maison-Blanche (2009–2011, 2015–2017)
- Porte-parole du département d'État (2013–2015)
Membre de l'équipe de transition de Joe Biden, elle a joué plusieurs rôles liés aux communications dans l'administration Obama en plus de participer à plusieurs campagnes présidentielles démocrates.
Celle qui sera la voix et le visage de la Maison-Blanche auprès des journalistes travaillera au sein d'une équipe des communications où les postes clés seront tous occupés par des femmes, une première.
CONSEILLER À LA SÉCURITÉ NATIONALE : JAKE SULLIVAN (44 ans)
- Conseiller à la sécurité nationale du vice-président Joe Biden (2013–2014)
- Directeur de la planification des politiques du département d'État (2011–2013)
Diplômé en sciences politiques, en études internationales et en droit, il a collaboré aux deux campagnes présidentielles de Hillary Clinton et à celle de Barack Obama.
Après avoir servi au sein du département d'État sous Hillary Clinton, il a travaillé dans le cabinet de Joe Biden, alors vice-président. Il a notamment participé aux négociations ayant mené, en 2015, à l'accord sur le programme nucléaire iranien, dont se sont retirés les États-Unis de Donald Trump.
ÉMISSAIRE SPÉCIAL DU PRÉSIDENT POUR LE CLIMAT : JOHN KERRY (76 ans)
- Secrétaire d'État dans le Cabinet Obama (2013–2017)
- Sénateur du Massachusetts (1985–2013)
Vétéran médaillé de la guerre du Vietnam, le candidat démocrate à la présidence de 2004 affiche une longue feuille de route politique.
L'ancien chef de la diplomatie américaine a entre autres aidé à négocier l'Accord de Paris sur le climat, puis l'a signé au nom des États-Unis, en 2015, avant que Donald Trump ne renie la signature de son pays.
Signe de l'importance que revêt l'enjeu environnemental pour Joe Biden, c'est la première fois que le Conseil de sécurité nationale inclura un responsable dont le rôle est entièrement consacré à la lutte contre les changements climatiques.
DIRECTEUR DE LA CIA : WILLIAMS BURNS (64 ans)
- Directeur de la Fondation Carnegie pour la paix internationale (2015 à aujourd'hui)
- Directeur adjoint du département d'État (2011–2014)
Joe Biden a choisi un diplomate de carrière pour diriger l'agence centrale de renseignement américaine, symbole de la divergence de vision avec son prédécesseur.
Diplomate pendant 33 ans, William Burns figurait parmi les candidats au poste de secrétaire d'État. Il a servi cinq présidents américains, du républicain Ronald Reagan au démocrate Barack Obama. Il a notamment été ambassadeur des États-Unis en Russie, de 2005 à 2008.
Il a reçu plusieurs honneurs présidentiels ainsi que les plus hautes distinctions civiles du Pentagone et de la communauté du renseignement américaine. Après sa retraite du corps diplomatique en 2014, il a pris la tête d'un groupe de réflexion sur les relations internationales.
Il serait le premier diplomate de carrière à diriger la CIA. Si Donald Trump avait accordé aux titulaires de ce poste le statut de membre de Cabinet, ce ne sera pas le cas sous Joe Biden.
DIRECTRICE DU CONSEIL DE POLITIQUE INTÉRIEURE : SUSAN RICE (56 ans)
- Conseillère à la sécurité nationale de la Maison-Blanche (2013–2017)
- Ambassadrice à l'ONU (2009–2013)
Davantage perçue comme secrétaire d'État potentielle, l'ex-diplomate sera plutôt chargée de superviser une grande partie du programme politique du 46e président américain.
Très critiquée par les républicains, elle aurait eu de la difficulté à franchir l'épreuve du Sénat. Ses propos initiaux après l'attentat de 2012 contre le consulat américain à Benghazi, en Libye, l'avaient ultimement privée du poste de secrétaire d’État. Elle avait d'abord accrédité la thèse d'une
manifestation spontanée ayant dégénéré.
L'ancienne collègue de Joe Biden qui a aussi servi dans l'administration Clinton figurait sur la liste de ses colistières possibles.
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