Democracy ‘defining challenge of our time’, Biden says at world summit

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President Joe Biden said on Thursday that democracy needed champions and in his view, democracy was the “defining challenge of our time.” Biden hosted a virtual summit with over 100 leaders of countries whom the administration described as democracies. Notably, China and Russia were not extended an invitation to attend.

Biden sat on a U-shaped desk, with Anthony Blinken and faced a screen that had images of participating leaders from across the world. His opening remarks also touched upon his definition of democracy as”fragile” but “inherently resilient.” President Biden also said that everyone knew that “democracy’s hard.”

The administration is trying to strengthen democracy within the nation through the Protecting Our Democracy Act. This act, put forth by the House of Representatives, seeks to prevent abuse of power by a president as the holder of the highest office in the nation has broad and complex powers that are sometimes vague and cannot be easily defined.



The notice by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) said that the nation’s “constitutional structure” had been “designed to preserve democracy and prevent authoritarianism.” It said that the promise was imperiled when a president placed himself “above the law” and disregarded the “separation of powers.”

It also mentioned that broad based presidential powers could lead to “retaliation against legitimate whistleblowers”, could allow “corruption” or could enable “foreign interference” in the elections conducted in the nation.

The notice takes a swipe at the former administration of Donald Trump as some of the above mentioned issues have reportedly taken place when Trump was the president.

The administration has also announced that it would seek to get $424 million for “democratic renewal programs” overseas. These programs would

strengthen independent media outlets
combat corruption
encourage democracy by offering greater internet access.

The nation has faced a lot of issues that have undermined its democratic practices including the January 6, riot at the Capitol as well as the undermining of the democratically held presidential elections. Voting bills that appear to limit voters, which might also appear to be undemocratic, have been passed in states that have Republican majorities.

There has also been criticism of some of the nations that have been invited to the democracy summit as these countries had controversial human rights records including Philippines and Nigeria. On the other side, NATO allies such as Turkey and Hungary were excluded as these democracies had rulers who were considered to be authoritarian.


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