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Joe Biden is the luckiest man to ever assume the presidency. He succeeded an unpopular figure. He was inaugurated just two weeks after the dramatic storming of the U.S. Capitol by extremist Donald Trump supporters seeking to stop the certification of the 2020 election, which was also the beginning of the year after widespread race riots. He inherited COVID-19 vaccines and a vaccine rollout plan and could rightly expect to ride the tsunami of natural economic recovery that was predicted for the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. He inherited a series of historic Middle Eastern peace deals. In other words, Biden had it easy. All he had to do was nothing. He could expect a new era of good feelings emerging from a tumultuous time. He could expect a booming economy, a more peaceful Middle East, a solution to the pandemic. All he had to do was calm the waters. This, after all, was what Americans voted for: not a transformational figure or a figure of radical change, but a stodgy, supposedly empathetic grandfather figure who could barely be bothered to leave his basement for the entirety of the presidential campaign.

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