“I will restore the soul of America” – Joe Biden

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The era of Donald Trump (74) is over. At 2:39 European Time time (20:39 local time) last night, his successor Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. (77) addressed his fellow countrymen and also the whole world. The 46th “elected president” of the USA promised in his first speech after his historic election victory: “I will restore the soul of America! This is the time to heal.”

He reached out his hand to the 71 million voters who had voted against him and for Donald Trump: “I don’t see any blue states. I see no red states. I see the United States.”

Thousands of people had gathered outside the Chase Center in Wilmington, Delaware, despite the Corona pandemic, to witness the historic victory speech of their new president. Only a few hundred were actually allowed to attend. But despite all the joy over the victory over Donald Trump, social distancing was no longer an option. After all, everyone present wore masks.

At the same time, millions of Americans, who had already celebrated frenetically all day, especially in the big cities, sat in front of the screens all over the country. At home. In sports bars. Or in public places like New York’s Times Square.

The first to step onto the stage was the “elected vice president” Kamala Harris (56) to the gospel song “We The People” – the first woman and also the first African-American in the White House. She wore a white pantsuit, high heels and a scarf. “You have chosen hope, unity, decency, science – and yes – truth,” she called out to the cheering crowd. “You have chosen Joe Biden.”

About her historical situation she said: “Joe Biden had the audacity to choose a black woman as his running mate.” A reference to the book of the first African-American US president Barack Obama’s (59) “The Audacity of Hope”.

She spoke about the role of women in the United States and that she might be the first woman in the White House, but not the last. Then she solemnly said: “It is my honor to introduce the elected president of America – Joe Biden.

Typically American: The 77-year-old came on stage at a run to radiate dynamism and strength despite his age. “My fellow Americans” he greeted the nation with his famous broad smile. “My fellow Americans…”

“The people of this nation have spoken,” he continued. “They have delivered us a clear victory, a convincing victory. A victory for ‘we the people. We have won the most votes in the history of our country. 74 million!”

To the millions of people who listened around the globe, he had this message: “America can be the beacon of the world. It is not through the power, but through the power of our role model that we will win leadership.”

Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. (77) addressed his fellow countrymen and also the whole world. Picture: screenshot, orf.at, ZiB Spezial

In what was probably his most passionate and most important speech of his political career to date (he was first elected to the U.S. Senate 48 years ago yesterday!), Biden said: “Tonight we see an outpouring of joy and hope, renewed faith in a better tomorrow throughout the nation, in the countryside, in the cities and around the world.

Again and again the Democrat, who had already made a run for the White House in 1988 and 2008, also addressed the supporters of the late President Trump – but only mentioned his name once. So far he refuses to accept his defeat and continues to polarize the country. Biden: “It is time to put aside the harsh rhetoric. Let’s give each other a chance. We have to stop seeing our opponents as enemies”.

Towards the end of his speech then an emotional moment, which especially in the Corona Pandemic, which has already claimed more than 240,000 lives in the USA, makes it clear that Joe Biden understands the suffering of the bereaved. In the last hours of the election campaign, he had to think very often about his deceased son Beau: “Beau, I hope you listen to me and you can shine and spread your wings. God has called us to do this here – with faith and love for this country”.

When he had spoken, the next First Lady of the United States, Jill Biden (69), came on stage in a colorful dress. She took off the mask and kissed her husband. Then, from the other side, the rest of his family and grandchildren walked up. And finally Kamala Harris and her husband Douglas Emhoff (56).

Those present continued to celebrate for a long time. The pictures reminded a little of the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989. People burst into tears or lay in each other’s arms. After four years of Donald Trump, the world now experiences the other side of America.

— Hector Pascua, Sources: Associated Press, AFP and bild.de. Picture: screenshot – ORF Zeit im Bild Spezial

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