President Biden’s first year has been one of ups and downs


Kaila Babyar

President Biden has been in office for a full year now, and his administration has been forced to tackle many ups and downs throughout 2021.

Tanay Pant, Spotlight Writer

Joe Biden was inaugurated into the presidency during a turbulent era filled with resentment, radicalization, and worry surrounding COVID-19. After a year of service, it is time to look back at how the Biden administration reacted to these national issues and others.

The Biden administration has followed through on its promise to curb unemployment. With over 6.4 million jobs added in the past year, the unemployment rate has fallen from 6.3 percent to just under four percent. This is a substantial improvement as it is almost as low as the rate for unemployment before the pandemic. It should be noted that lowering restrictions also contributed to the increase in employment across the country.

The Biden administration also achieved their COVID-19 related goals after over 64 percent of American adults became fully vaccinated and 75 percent received at least one dose as of Jan. 30, 2022. While this goal was reached a few weeks after the deadline the administration imposed, the White House still celebrated it as an achievement. From celebrity interviews to the White House’s official statements, the Biden administration has been trying since the genesis of his term to get more people vaccinated. The administration appears to be approaching their goal.

Despite the improvements made during his term, there have still been many glaring issues that the administration has yet to solve. The most popular issue that has not been remedied yet would have to be the inflation crisis. Since the beginning of Biden’s term, consumer prices for products have risen by seven percent, the fastest pace of inflation in over 40 years. This is particularly high compared to the earlier presidents. For example, prices rose 2.1 percent under Trump’s administration and 2.7 percent under Obama’s administration. Because Obama secured the presidency during the 2008 financial crisis and still managed to keep inflation low, Biden’s handling of the inflation crisis seems to be mismanaged at best.

Another product of poor economic handling would be the increase in the national debt. In just a year, the national debt went from $27.8 trillion to $29.8 trillion at a net increase of 2 trillion dollars. 2021 was a turbulent year, and the continuation of the pandemic may have affected government spending; however, the fact remains that the national debt is increasing at an exponential rate, and it shows little signs of slowing.

There have been many other issues that have impacted the administration’s first year, from border deportations rising to the Afghanistan crisis. All of these shortcomings and accomplishments have accumulated in an approval rate of 44 percent nationwide. Compared to Trump’s average of 41 percent and Obama’s of 50 percent, it appears that Biden’s popularity among the American public is average at best and subpar at worst. However, considering the strides made in smashing unemployment and limiting the spread of COVID-19, progress has still been achieved via job creation, COVID-19 security, and more.