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The Global Responsibility of Biden and Harris

One of the most damaging consequences of Donald Trump’s presidency has been the loss of America’s global stature. Should the Democrats triumph in November, the new president and vice-president must adopt an internationalist mindset and seek to build a better future for all of humanity.

ITHACA – Neither Joe Biden nor Kamala Harris was my first choice among the contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination in the United States. But when Biden, by then the party’s presumptive nominee, announced earlier this month that Senator Harris would be his vice-presidential running mate, it felt like a breath of fresh air.

Speakers at the recently concluded Democratic National Convention – including some Republicans like former Ohio Governor John Kasich – stressed the importance of decency and empathy in politics. And in his inspiring acceptance speech, Biden emphasized the need for America to be “a light to the world once again.” Listening to these words, I felt a rush of hope.

If Biden and Harris win in November, they will introduce important policy initiatives. They will improve the embarrassing US health-care system, which walls off a large section of the population from cutting-edge medical research and the world’s finest health facilities. They will try to remedy the worsening conditions confronting America’s working class, and restore some US efforts to combat climate change. But I do not think they will push for the sort of radical reforms that someone like Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders would have attempted.

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