The Biden Administration acted strongly last month in response to the recent collapses of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) and Signature Bank. Each collapse sent shockwaves through the U.S. banking system and shook the confidence of consumers nationwide. The Biden Administration showed swift and steady leadership in urgently addressing the crisis. The President and leading Democrats in Congress continue to push for stronger regulatory oversight with respect to the banks. This shows that the Democrats are on the right side of the banking issue, as they have been for the 16 years following the 2008 financial crisis.
In August, President Joe Biden announced that his administration would be implementing a one-time student loan debt relief program for Americans with student loan debt. Since the announcement, the administration has posted guidance on the Department of Education’s website that explains the plan in detail and attempts to answer some FAQs. The website outlining the plan states that $10,000 worth of debt would be forgiven for Americans making less than $125,000 a year who have outstanding federal student loans. For those who received Pell Grants to pay for college, up to $20,000 worth of student loan debt would be forgiven. The website states that “the Administration will launch a simple application in October” that must be completed by the end of the year to determine whether borrowers qualify for debt forgiveness. That application is now available on the Federal Student Aid website.
In an effort to reduce gun violence, President Biden has announced tighter regulations on the sale of “ghost guns.” Ghost guns are guns sold in several pieces and subsequently assembled by the buyer. Historically, gun kits have not been required to have serial numbers and their sales have not required background checks, which has made them far easier to acquire than normal firearms, despite the final product being substantially the same.
A new President and a changing administration mean new priorities across some, if not all of the major executive agencies. One of the more heavily impacted industries will be transportation—specifically the automotive sector. From re-instating stricter emissions standards to moving forward with automated vehicle regulations, the automotive industry in the early 2020s should see innovation and progress at the forefront of the country’s new federal regulatory scheme.
President Joe Biden has issued a number of Executive Orders, many of which address the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency. On January 21, 2021, President Biden released another pillar of his Administration’s long-term plan to direct the United States out of the throes of the pandemic. The twelfth Executive Order titled, “Ensuring a Data-Driven Response to COVID-19 and Future High-Consequence Public Health Threats” orders the Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) Secretary Alex Azar to conduct a nationwide review of the interoperability of public health data systems in an effort to enhance the collection, sharing, analysis, and collaboration of de-identified patient data.