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Politics Politics live updates: Biden to unveil executive orders on climate change; Fauci to speak on COVID

17:43  27 january  2021
17:43  27 january  2021 Source:   usatoday.com

Fauci says serving in the Trump administration was 'somewhat awkward'

  Fauci says serving in the Trump administration was 'somewhat awkward' "It's not a happy day when you have to get up in front of national TV and contradict" the president, Fauci said. "It's not a happy day when you have to get up in front of national TV and contradict something that the president of the United States says," Fauci said in an interview with Harvard Business Review. "I take no pleasure in that at all.

Here's what's happening in politics Jan. 27, 2021. Check back often for updates.

President Joe Biden on Wednesday is set to issue another raft of executive actions tied to combatting climate change, prioritizing science and evidence-based policy across federal agencies and pausing oil drilling on public lands. It's the latest move to unwind the environmental policies of Trump, who challenged the basis of climate change and had former energy industry lobbyists running key environmental agencies.

Joe Biden wearing a suit and tie: President Biden orders 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine for summer © POOL President Biden orders 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine for summer

Biden has pledged to be the most aggressive president on climate change, which he has called "an existential threat." His goal is to decarbonize the U.S. power sector by 2035 on the way to reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Here's the full list of Biden's executive actions so far

  Here's the full list of Biden's executive actions so far Steps to strengthen the nation's Covid-19 response and restore environmental protections are among Biden's first measures as president.The new president also ordered the establishment a variety of environmental protections and changes to immigration policy.

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The U.S. emits the second largest amount of carbon dioxide in the world after China.

The actions he'll sign Wednesday afternoon will also elevate climate change as a national security concern, commit to the goal of conserving at least 30% of all federal land and water by 2030, which stands at 12% today, and build on his economic policy agenda to direct federal agencies to "procure carbon pollution-free electricity and clean, zero-emission vehicles to create good-paying, union jobs and stimulate clean energy industries."

Part of that order will be ensuring the federal purchases are line with Biden's "Buy American" initiative aimed at boosting the federal government's purchases of U.S.-manufactured goods.

All of Biden's executive orders, and other notable actions, so far

  All of Biden's executive orders, and other notable actions, so far All of President Joe Biden's executive orders -- and other notable actions -- so far. Here's a look at all of his executive orders, and other notable executive actions, so far:

Republicans who say Biden's climate policies are cost-prohibitive, will hurt American businesses and eliminate oil and gas jobs.

The movefollows Biden’s decisions last week to suspend for 60 days new drilling permits on federal lands and waters, halt construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline and rejoin the Paris Agreement on climate change.

The latest orders won’t stop energy firms from acting on existing oil and gas leases in the western U.S. and the Gulf of Mexico, some of which were issued in the final weeks of the Trump administration.

The action will also created a National Climate Task Force, which will feature leaders from across 21 federal agencies and departments and formally announce a climate summit of world leaders on Earth Day, April 22.

The League of Conservation Voters applauded the plan, describing it as a "whole of government approach that puts bold climate action, clean energy, and environmental justice at the heart of their domestic and foreign policy agenda."

OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Biden signs series of orders to tackle climate change | Republicans press Granholm on fossil fuels during confirmation hearing

  OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Biden signs series of orders to tackle climate change | Republicans press Granholm on fossil fuels during confirmation hearing HAPPY WEDNESDAY! Welcome to Overnight Energy, The Hill's roundup of the latest energy and environment news. Please send tips and comments to Rebecca Beitsch at rbeitsch@thehill.com. Follow her on Twitter: @rebeccabeitsch. Reach Rachel Frazin at rfrazin@thehill.com or follow her on Twitter: @RachelFrazin.Signup for our newsletter and others HERE. IT'S CLIMATE DAY.The orders President Biden will sign three executive actions on Wednesday aimed at addressing the climate crisis, kicking off the process of meeting U.S. obligations under the Paris agreement while directing the government to purchase electric vehicles and pause new oil and gas leases on public lands.

“Congress must complement these executive actions with bold legislation that puts our economy on a path to recovery by making transformative investments in healthy, equitable, safe communities powered by clean energy," the organization said in a statement.

Courtney Subramanian and Ledyard King

White House COVID Response Team to host first news conference

The White House announced the first of what will be regular coronavirus response briefings starting Wednesday at 11 a.m.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, Andy Slavitt, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, and Jeff Zients will participate. Missing will be recently retired Dr. Deborah Birx, former coordinator for the White House coronavirus task force, who became nationally known for her role in press conferences in the Trump administration.

During a recent interview on CBS "Face the Nation" Birx said she “always considered” resigning from the White House coronavirus task force, and that someone had been delivering a “parallel set of data” to Trump.

The coronavirus task force press briefings had been a daily occurrence at the beginning of the pandemic, but then became increasingly sparse as Trump dismissed them just a few weeks in.

‘It’s time to act’: Biden freezes new oil and gas leases, scraps fossil fuel subsidies as part of historic climate change action

  ‘It’s time to act’: Biden freezes new oil and gas leases, scraps fossil fuel subsidies as part of historic climate change action Biden's executive orders are likely to draw intense backlash from Republicans and fossil fuel industries, who say Biden’s push for fighting climate change will cause tens of thousands of workers to lose their jobs.President Biden took executive action Wednesday to drastically cut back fossil fuel production as part of the most aggressive effort to combat climate change in American history, with a particular focus on transitioning to renewable energy sources and ensuring environmental justice for minority and low-income communities.

Biden announced Tuesday the U.S. has reached an agreement to purchase an additional 200 million coronavirus vaccine doses, a boost that means the U.S. will have enough supply to fully vaccinate 300 million Americans by the end of summer or beginning of fall.

—Savannah Behrmann

Harris to ceremonially swear in Blinken as Secretary of State

Around noon on Wednesday, Vice President Kamala Harris will ceremonially swear in Antony Blinken as Secretary of State at the White House.

In a strong show of bipartisan support, the Senate confirmed Blinken78 to 22 on Tuesday, including "yes" votes from several top Republicans, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

More: Senate confirms Antony Blinken as Biden's secretary of state

Blinken was sworn in at the State Department Tuesday afternoon, saying it was a "full circle" moment: "I started at the @StateDept in 1993, and, today, it's the honor of my life to lead the Department's women and men as the 71st Secretary of State."

Tuesday night, Blinken spoke with Mexican Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard, about the "shared interest in security and economic integration, as well as our focus on an orderly and humane approach to migration," according to spokesperson Ned Price.

—Deirdre Shesgreen

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Politics live updates: Biden to unveil executive orders on climate change; Fauci to speak on COVID

Biden not budging on $1.9 trillion in COVID-19 relief, presses Congress to act fast after lackluster jobs report .
President Joe Biden pushes for $1.9 trillion in COVID relief as lackluster jobs report shows U.S. economy continues to sputter amid global pandemic.In remarks from the White House, Biden said the economy is still in trouble, and he called on Congress to quickly to pass his proposal with or without GOP support.

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