Joe Biden is the 46th US president at last. One week into his momentous presidency, our editorial team has looked to one staple of life under lockdown to discern what to expect from his presidency. We played a round of Scrabble, and these are the words that we believe will define the  success, or failure, of Mr Biden’s presidency.

Scrabble Square

Danielle Myles, contributor


Engage — I expect Mr Biden to re-engage with allies, multilateral platforms, and join global agreements and pacts. 

Crisis — The health and economic fallout of pandemic will reverberate for years. 

Reform — He has an ambitious reform agenda to pursue via executive orders or maximising control of the Senate and House. 

Parity — I expect more equality via appointees (more non-white males), and a president fighting for all to level-up the country. 

Seth O’Farrell, global markets reporter

Climate — Naturally, I expect Mr Biden to pursue an ambitious climate change agenda and lead a post-Trumpian environment of collaboration and acceptance. 

Kamala — Kamala Harris is the most invigorating, exciting, talked about vice president we’ve seen for a while. 

Senate — Mr Biden is characterised as old guard with a new agenda: the Senate is where we’ll see those things collide. 

Iran — What Mr Biden decides to do with Iran will provide enormous insight into the kind of multilateralist he is. 


Alex Irwin-Hunt, global markets editor

Rescind — Mr Biden will continue to use executive orders (and presumably later legislate through Congress) to reverse Donald Trump’s policies. 

Unity — He has repeated ‘unity’ many times in his inauguration speech, and this is arguably the main goal and challenge of his presidency. 

Green — Putting climate- and science-led policy front and centre. 

Fences — He will try to mend fences, bring people together again and heal the wounds inflicted on American democracy by Mr Trump. 


Jacopo Dettoni, editor 

Flip — What length will Mr Biden go to in order to flip Mr Trump’s policies, beyond easy guesses like climate change? 

Unrest — Social unrest will not abate and it is possibly the main threat to his presidency. 

China — Tensions with China will not abate either. 

Bitcoin — Many believe the momentous rise of bitcoin is the result of years of unconditional monetary expansion and a burgeoning asset bubble. Facing looming monetary challenges, appointing former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen as treasury secretary was no coincidence.