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Joe Biden's very important Covid quarantine

The more than two weeks Biden spent with only a German Shepherd for the company proved some of the most important parts of his presidency. glove.

Some White House staffers even said he felt some degree of whiplash, and Biden himself mused about the sudden turn of events.

"It's been an extraordinary few days for the country," he said Wednesday at a virtual rally of Democrats.

It goes without saying how extraordinary those days were for Biden himself, who oversaw almost everything from his White House residence and was isolated with a bare minimum of staff.

The brutal months that followed had left President Biden feeling depressed. It was fueled by high prices,terrible approval numbers,andswirling questions about the president's ability to seize the initiative. } Many problems still remain, such as the spread of monkeypox, the war in Ukraine, and the shortage of baby formula, creating a new crisis in China. Democrats running this year still keep their distance from the president.
But Biden and his allies are now enthused by a string of victories. This includes passing major legislation,long-standing agreements on climate change and tax bills, steady gasoline price declines and job growththis week. The primaries in Kansas also gave the Democrats new hope for the midterms.

Biden is gearing up for a victory lap of sorts, with the signing of key White House bills scheduled for the next few days in the Rose Garden. He tests negative and leaves isolation.

Monday, July 25

Biden's Cabinet Officials and National Security Advisor met with him on his fourth day out of coronavirus isolation. By the time the president's runny nose had nearly stopped. His voice was not very harsh.

And I had some questions.

The team produced a final information assessment indicating that al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahirilived on her third floor in a hideout in an upscale residential area. I was preparing. Kabul. As he stepped onto the balcony, the CIA's plan to take him out with a Hellfire missile was almost ready.

But Biden wanted to know what was behind the window and door to the small outdoor patio. He asked about the layout of a room near where his team proposed killing Zawahiri. And were there other options to reduce the likelihood of civilian casualties?

He had already spent time examining a small-scale model of the house that intelligence had constructed and brought in a worn wooden crate to his room in the White House Situation. But he needed to make sure the mission wouldn't cause collateral damage.

The meeting lasted several hours, according to one official. Mr. Biden was "pressured at a granular level," added another senior government official.

The meeting concluded with Biden going to each of his top advisers and asking for their recommendations. Eleven years ago, at a similar negotiating table before the raid that killed Osama bin Laden,Biden said then-President Barack he told Obama to hold off.

Biden didn't hear dissent this time. And he authorized the strike.

On Wednesday, July 27,

at 9:12 a.m. ET, Biden did his best by rubbing his nose with a cotton swab. Officially, it was his sixth day in quarantine for Covid. His symptoms had disappeared. He started working out again at the White House gym.

Biden, who mostly worked in his second-floor treaty room, a giant oil painting watched by President William McKinley, nearly went insane during his isolation. The strike he authorized two days before him is still underway as the operatives wait for the right moment.

He stepped out onto the balcony of White's House and waved to the visitors below.

Fifteen minutes later,Abbot's rapid test for Covid-19 on him showed only one pink line on him: it was negative. Biden was thrilled. He joked that his aide might not.

"I thought I heard a grunt from the staff saying, 'Oh, he's back,' as I was walking by," he joked in the rose garden, discussing the virus he'd been through. over two years of trying to avoid it.

Beating Covid, or at least his first game, turned out not to be the biggest surprise that Wednesday. When Biden returned to work in the Oval Office, a plan was being finalized on the Capitol that could dramatically reverse the fortunes of a domestic agenda that many had left for dead. .

This climate change and tax deal in total secrecy between Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, the most moderate Democrat in the Senate, The bill surprised many inside the White House. The general perception that the two men have resumed negotiations.

"They were basically kind of informed of what was going on," Manchin told reporters.

That afternoon, upon learning the men had reached an agreement, Biden went to Manchin, who had been isolated with Covid in the mountains of West Virginia, for the first formal meeting on the president's agenda. Since December when I called.

Members of his staff gathered in the dining room adjacent to the Oval Office for the first time in seven days — wearing masks in case Biden's Covid returns — the president turned on the TV. , saw another long time — a stalled bill passes the Senate. The bill to invest in the domestic computer production and scientific research of his chipswas intended to make it more competitive with China.

China was becoming Biden's next problem.

Thursday, July 28

Resolute in the Oval Office Mr. Biden, sitting behind his desk, opened a binder and disjointed his briefing. A stack of cards was scattered in front of him. Message to Chinese President Xi Jinping: Nancy Pelosi will decide for herself whether to visit Taiwan.

Already, her potential visit has drawn heavy condemnation from Beijing, with Chinese officials warning other members of Congress not to join her.

Biden, a day before he tested positive for the novel coronavirus, told reporters the military didn't think it was a good time for a U.S. presidential runner-up to visit a dominion island. was telling

His Secretary of Defense spoke privately with the speaker and provided an assessment of the security situation.

Pelosi's possible visit surfaced two weeks earlier during a meeting in Bali, China, with Secretary of State Anthony Brinken, according to a senior State Department official.

Biden listened carefully as an interpreter translated Mr. Xi's warning as he sat on a lengthy two-hour, 17-minute conference call in the Oval Office.

Members of his team in the room - Blinken, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, Deputy National Security Advisor John Feiner, NSC Asia Coordinator Kurt Campbell, Sr. His Director Laura Rosenberger of The New York Times wasn't surprised by this rhetoric. Xi had used a similar phrase on an earlier call.

By the end of the conference call, Mr. Biden and Mr. Xi talked about how much work they had created for their teams, according to senior government officials.

Saturday, July 30

After not leaving his House White for 11 days, Biden was ready to break free. His home in Delaware and his wife, whom he hadn't seen in over a week, were beckoning.

All of his daily rapid tests were negative. He has returned to his regular schedule at the gym. And he was planning a surprise visit to the Capitol, where protesters had gathered after Republicans blocked a bill that would dramatically expand government benefits for veterans exposed to toxic burns. .

Therefore, the news delivered by the White House medical team was not welcome. Rebound infection was always seen as a possibility by Biden's doctors, given similar incidents among people who took the antiviral drug Paxlovid. Other than the cough, Biden's symptoms never returned.

But even before he was stranded alone for more than his two weeks, his plans to escape the White House, a building he had come to regard as a golden cage, were foiled. finished.

Biden took Veterans Affairs Secretary Dennis McDonagh to FaceTime while delivering pizza to a group at the Capitol.

"I tell you, as long as I have breath, I will fight to get this done. As long as I have breath," he told them.

While Truman was using his FaceTime on his balcony, the situation his team in his room had determined was favorable for an attack on Zawahiri. As the sun was setting, Biden was informed that a mission was underway. Before 10:12 pm. ET, Zawahiri was dead.

Monday, August 1

The dry cough has returned. And Biden was looking at the possibility of an entirely new crisis.

Hours after Pelosi's arrival in Taiwan, the island's leadership prepared for a lavish welcome. China hastily conducted live-fire exercises over the weekend, a sign of their extreme displeasure.

At the White House, national security officials saw signs that Beijing was preparing for further provocations, including launching missiles and sending fighter jets across the Taiwan Strait.

After working over the past few weeks to inform Pelosi of the risks of visiting Taiwan, including briefings from the Pentagon and other senior government officials, it is expected that she will not stop visiting Taiwan by Monday. There was a realization that

Biden didn't believe it was his position to say she shouldn't go to Pelosi, and the two never spoke about it. He has avoided publicly commenting on her trip since his first statement on July 21st.

In any case, Biden was focused on a different issue: Zawahiri's death was announcedBy Monday, officials announced his two deaths in Kabul on Saturday night. The man hit by Hellfire's missile is actually the leader of the terror.

They did not have the results of his DNA test, instead relying on visual confirmation. One official said Biden would never address the country unless he was 100% sure of his identity.

As reporters watched from the balcony of the Blue Room through open windows at COVID-19 safe distance, Biden

said, "No matter how long it takes, no matter where you hide, Biden In his seven-minute speech, Mr. U.S. will find you and take you out.

Tuesday, August 2

A string of victories in the legislature will An unusual sentiment has developed in the West Wing: momentum, which Biden once hoped to capitalize on in Michigan and plans to visit Michigan on Tuesday to sign the China Competitiveness Act.

When Biden's rebound case surfaced, the trip was called off, and he virtually met with a chip maker instead, though some Democrats touted his accomplishments. He is openly concerned that the advantage of his recent victory may be thwarted because he has struggled relentlessly with the Democrats who had been waiting for their doom in the November midterm elections.

saw a touch of optimism that night when Kansas voters overwhelmingly rejected measures that would remove protections for abortion rights.Roe v. Supreme Court to Overturn Wade Biden, whose activists were accused of failing to step in the court's decision, saw the consequences almost immediately.

But among all the issues pending in Washington, the veterans bill was most personal to the president, who long suspected his son Beau's deadly cancer was linked to burn pit exposures in Iraq.

Tuesday Bo's memory was clear when he saw thevote finally pass through the Senate on that night in the treaty room.

Biden raised his right fist as he watched the votes pass, and in his left hand he wore a Beau Biden Foundation baseball cap.

Thursday, August 4

A lengthy meeting on the Senate floor drew attention: Manchin and Kirsten Si Senator Nema -- the Arizona Democrat who was the last remaining Democrat on the climate and tax bill -- sat and ranted, while Manchin gestured and laughed as Cinema spoke. .

Neither gave details of their story. But hours later, cinema broke its week-long silence on the bill as a thunderstorm raged outside the White House.

A long-standing plan has finally been put to the vote. But even as Biden's year-long agenda narrative seemed to settle, the conflict with China sparked by Pelosi's 17-hour visit to Taiwan was worsening.

Beijing sent more warships and planes near Taiwan. And at the White House, the Chinese Ambassador to Washington was brought in for a formal protest. NSC Asia coordinator Campbell condemned the escalation at a tense meeting.

Friday 5th August

Cough almost gone. The 5-day quarantine period has ended. And after 16 days without leaving the White House, Biden's surprisingly strong jobs report of 528,000 jobs added in July presented him with the perfect opportunity to finally break his isolation. I hoped it might.

After all, strong employment was the White House's strongest bulwark against recession fears. The aide made initial preparations for turning the afternoon's virtual event into an in-person one.

However, the test was still positive.