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In op-ed, Elizabeth Warren details what she thinks a Biden-Harris administration should do on Day One

Senator Elizabeth Warren campaigned for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in Manchester, N.H., in October.
Senator Elizabeth Warren campaigned for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in Manchester, N.H., in October.Jonathan Wiggs/Globe Staff

In an op-ed published in the Washington Post on Wednesday, Elizabeth Warren said President-elect Joe Biden should address a wide range of issues, including student loan debt, drug prices, and racial equity on his first day in office.

The Massachusetts senator wrote that Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris won the election with the “most progressive economic and racial justice platform of any general election nominee ever,” and there are several immediate actions they can take through “executive orders and agency action."

She noted that Biden has already said he would reenter the Paris Climate Accord, reinstate DACA, and end President Trump’s travel ban on some Muslim countries.

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Here are other actions Warren suggested for the Biden administration after Jan. 20:

  • Student loans: Warren said Biden should “cancel billions of dollars in student loan debt,” describing the move as “the single most effective executive action available to provide massive consumer-driver stimulus.”
  • Drug prices: Biden should lower drug prices by “using existing compulsory licensing authority that allows the federal government to bypass patents for pressing public health needs,” Warren wrote.
  • COVID-19 protections for workers: Warren suggested Biden set OSHA health and safety standards for COVID-19 “so giant companies don’t escape accountability for workplace conditions that expose workers to serious harm and even death."
  • Minimum wage: Biden should increase the minimum wage for all federal contractors to $15 per hour, Warren wrote.
  • Racial equity: As part of the Biden-Harris campaign’s pledge to create a Racial and Ethnic Disparities Task Force, Warren said the administration should collect and report COVID-19 data and review racial disparities in funding.
  • Climate: Biden should “declare the climate crisis a national emergency to start marshaling resources toward addressing this challenge," Warren wrote.
  • Anti-monopoly protections: Biden should prioritize strong anti-monopoly protections and enforcement to restore balance and competition.

Warren added the Biden administration can, “with a single order,” issue strong ethics and anti-corruption standards for executive branch personnel to “padlock the revolving door between jobs in government and industry, reduce the influence of lobbyists, and eliminate conflicts of interest.”


Amanda Kaufman can be reached at amanda.kaufman@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @amandakauf1.