By Caribbean News Global
WASHINGTON, USA – Three time the charm as Joe Biden captured the US presidency Saturday to become the 46th president-elect. Kamala Harris, vice-president-elect in a historic introduction of the president-elect address to the nation in Wilmington, Delaware on Saturday, said: “And when our very democracy was on the ballot in this election, with the very soul of America at stake, and the world watching, you ushered in a new day for America.”
From many perspectives, a reset and structural change of America is on the way, even as the final counts continue, in a divided country. Under the current free-fall in foreign relations, it matters what policies and shared priorities will be adopted by the US government concerning China, Russia, Taiwan, the Middle – East, Iran, Latin America and the Caribbean.
The Bible tells us, “to everything there is a season: a time to build, a time to reap, and a time to sow and a time to heal.” This is the time to heal in America. Now this campaign is over, what is the will of the people? What is our mandate?
“I believe it’s this: Americans have called upon us to marshal the forces of decency, the forces of fairness, to marshal the forces of science and the forces of hope in the great battles of our time. The battle to control the virus. The battle to build prosperity. The battle to secure your family’s health care. The battle to achieve racial justice and root out systemic racism in this country.
“And the battle to save our planet by getting climate under control. The battle to restore decency, defend democracy, and give everybody in this country a fair shot. That’s all they’re asking for, a fair shot. Folks, our work begins with getting COVID under control.
“Folks, America has always been shaped by inflection points, by moments in time where we’ve made hard decisions about who we are and what we want to be. Lincoln in 1860 coming to save the union. FDR in 1932 promising a beleaguered country a new deal. JFK in 1960 pledging a new frontier, and 12 years ago, when Barack Obama made history, he told us, “Yes, we can.”
“Well folks, we stand at an inflection point. We have an opportunity to defeat despair, to build a nation of prosperity and purpose. We can do it. I know we can,” president-elect Biden said.
While global leaders react with congratulatory messages, president- elect Biden leadership and promise unfold to fight the coronavirus pandemic and fix the economy in a divided nation, he explained: “This is the United States of America, and there has never been anything, never been anything we’ve been able – not able to do when we’ve done it together. We will not lead – we will lead not only by the example of our power, but by the power of our example.”
The following are congratulatory messages:
Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne
“On behalf of the people and government of Antigua and Barbuda, and on my own behalf, I congratulate you warmly on your election as the 46th president of the United States of America.
“I recall our work together, while you served as vice president, to advance the security and well-being of the United States and its neighbours in the Caribbean. I especially recall, with appreciation, the work that you had started on building security in energy and my participation with you in conferences to facilitate progress in this vital area. […]
“As you begin to plan for your assumption of office in January 2021, I know that you will be cognizant the Caribbean is the “third border” of the United States and that our governments have a joint responsibility to cooperate in economic and social development that will keep our collective neighbourhood prosperous. I greatly look forward to our two governments working closely together to meet the great challenges of our time, including ending the COVID-19 pandemic, restoring our economies to full strength, putting our people into the fullest employment possible, tackling the existential threat posed by climate change, and making our world a safer place for all.”
Barbados’ Prime Minister Mia Mottley
“The people and government of Barbados warmly congratulate president-elect Joe Biden and his vice president-elect Kamala Harris, the first woman and person of colour to hold that position.
“I am sure that we in the Caribbean will look forward with optimism to working with the new administration to confront a number of global Issues from the awful pandemic to the climate crisis to the pursuit of racial justice.
“There is much work for the world to do if we are to lift up our people across the globe to fight these issues that know no boundaries but require character and leadership to defeat them.”
Commonwealth of Dominica Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit
“Today, the Commonwealth of Dominica congratulates and celebrates those who were chosen by the people, president-elect, Joseph Biden and vice president-elect, Kamala Harris.
“The Caribbean feels particular pride, for this election result has lifted up and honoured women and immigrants. Kamala Harris, an American woman with Caribbean roots, has become the first woman and the first person of colour to hold the office of vice president of the United States. She has achieved what Shirley Chisholm, another American woman with Caribbean roots, imagined possible.
“Ahead are enormous challenges and crises, both national and global – COVID, climate change, inclusive economic enfranchisement, sustainable social equity and justice. Yours is now the task to bring the peace of reconciliation, the balm of healing, the promise of hope and the strength of unity. Your friends and neighbours in the Caribbean pledge their support. Democracy has triumphed.”
Jamaica Prime Minister Andrew Holness
“On behalf of the government and people of Jamaica, I extend heartiest congratulations to the president-elect and vice president-elect of the United States Joseph R. Biden and Kamala Harris. The United States of America will have its first woman and person of colour as vice-president in Kamala Harris. We are proud that she has Jamaican heritage. Her ascension to the role of VP is a monumental accomplishment for women all over the world and I salute her. Jamaica looks forward to the continued strong bilateral relations with our largest trading partner, the US, particularly as we work to stimulate our economies in the face of the COVID19 pandemic.”
Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley
“On behalf of the government and people of Trinidad and Tobago, extends warmest welcome and congratulations to United States president-elect Joe Biden and vice president-elect Kamala Harris.
“Given the close familial ties of both our countries and our joint economic and security connections, we look forward to the strengthening of those bonds in the months and years ahead.
“We, as Caribbean people filled with pride, extend a special accolade to vice president-elect Kamala Harris as we acknowledge her Caribbean roots and wish both officeholders a very successful term, not only for the American citizens but for all the people of the world.”
Opposition Leader Philip Pierre, Saint Lucia Labour Party
“As the world continues to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, we are comforted in the leadership of the president-elect and vice president-elect to decelerate the spread of the virus in the USA which is a global tourism hub and primary source market for Saint Lucia.”
“More specifically, this victory resonates with the people of the Caribbean, recognizing that vice president-Elect Kamala Harris is the daughter of a Jamaican immigrant, the first woman and person of color to be elected to one of the highest offices in the USA and the world.”
Saint Lucia Prime minister Allen Chastanet
“The results indicate that the American people have decided that Joseph Biden and Kamala Harris will be their leaders. On behalf of the government and people of Saint Lucia I congratulate the president-elect and vice president-elect.”
“We very much look forward to that relationship continuing. Initiatives important to our mutual interests include economic prosperity, climate change and security. With the campaign over, it’s time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation.”
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
“On behalf of the government of Canada, I congratulate Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on their election as the next president and vice president of the United States of America. Canada and the United States enjoy an extraordinary relationship – one that is unique on the world stage.”
“I look forward to working with president-elect Biden, vice president-elect Harris, their administration, and the United States Congress as we tackle the world’s greatest challenges together.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel
“I look forward to future cooperation with president Biden. Our transatlantic friendship is irreplaceable if we are to master the great challenges of our time.”
Statement by President of the European Council Charles Michel
The EU is closely following the presidential and Congressional elections in the United States.
We take note of the latest development in the electoral process. On this basis the EU congratulates president-elect Joe Biden and vice president-elect Kamala Harris on reaching enough electoral votes
We welcome the record voter turnout. We follow the process of certification of results and are confident that the US electoral system will soon announce the final outcome. The EU underlines, once again, its commitment to a strong transatlantic partnership and stands ready to engage with the elected president, new Congress and administration.
UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab
“My congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on winning this election, with more votes than any candidate in US history. President Trump fought hard in what proved a close contest. We’re looking forward to working with the new administration on all of our shared interests, from tackling COVID-19 to counter-terrorism, and collaborating closely through our Presidencies of COP26 and the G7 next year. The friendship between the UK and US has always been a force for good in the world.”
Joseph R. Biden, Jr., in the article, Why America Must Lead Again – Rescuing US Foreign Policy After Trump – March/April 2020, said:
“But democracy is not just the foundation of American society. It is also the wellspring of our power. It strengthens and amplifies our leadership to keep us safe in the world. It is the engine of our ingenuity that drives our economic prosperity. It is the heart of who we are and how we see the world—and how the world sees us. It allows us to self-correct and keep striving to reach our ideals over time.”