Biden administration

Senator’s bouncer

At stake is not just key legislation; indeed, the image of the Democrats has been hammered. Potentially, Manchin’s desertion from the ranks derails Biden’s “Build Back Better Act”, but simultaneously raises questions over passing the voting rights legislation and other crucial bills that will require his support in the 50-50 Senate.

Boots on the ground

For one thing, he scarcely appears to be firm on abiding by the 1st of May deadline for the withdrawal of US troops. The boots may not be off the ground quite yet.

Japan in focus

Tokyo has also welcomed President Biden’s efforts to stop the downward spiral in its relations with South Korea. And it has been rewarded – Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is likely to be the first foreign leader to visit the Biden White House for a summit meet in the first week of April.

Pole position

On China, the Biden Administration has cast itself as the only power capable – and now willing – to take on Beijing’s alleged bullying in the region and its attempt to overturn the rules-based global order. The just-concluded and rather combustible US-China talks in Anchorage provided more evidence of Washington’s hardening stand.