Biden offers COVID template for world leadership: The Note

The TAKE with Rick Klein

If the best way to measure summits is in terms of “deliverables,” this is some delivery at the outset.

President Joe Biden is promising 500 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine to distribute around the world, announced as he began a series of high-profile summits in Europe. The goal, according to national security adviser Jake Sullivan, is to make the United States “the arsenal of vaccines,” like the nation was “the arsenal of democracy during World War II.”

PHOTO: President Joe Biden addresses US Air Force personnel at RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk, ahead of the G7 summit in Cornwall, June 9, 2021 in Mildenhall, England.

The comparison is telling — and speaks to the outsized goals and expectations of Biden’s first foreign trip as president. Biden has cast conquering COVID as the defining challenge of his time in office, and he’s offering American efforts as something of a template for his vision of the nation’s role in the world.

His emphasis on science resonates beyond the pandemic and into other areas of public health and in climate change. The concept of sharing in prosperity matters in areas of trade and commerce where European leaders are anxious about what’s coming next.

The build-up to Biden’s time abroad has focused on what and who he is not — whether that’s either of the last two U.S. presidents, or the current Russian one. It may yet be the tail end of the trip, when Biden meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin, that defines success or shortcomings.

PHOTO: Russian President Vladimir Putin takes part in the launch of Gazprom's Amur Gas Processing Plant via videolink at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow, June 9, 2021.

Still, this is Biden, finally, on his own on the world stage. “America First” is no longer, though the new president is hoping to define himself just as simply, just in ways that could be far more complicated.

The RUNDOWN with Averi Harper

Just days before New Yorkers start casting their ballots in the mayoral primary, one candidate is not only defending his platform but also the place he calls home.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams is pushing back after a report raised questions about whether he actually lives in New York City or if he lives in New Jersey with his partner.

PHOTO: Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams host a breakfast with reporters at his house in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn, June 9, 2021.

The report prompted Adams to invite press inside a garden-level apartment in the Bedford Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, an effort to prove he lives in the five boroughs. The controversy comes after Adams slammed his opponent, former presidential candidate Andrew Yang, for retreating to a Hudson Valley home during the height of the pandemic.

“You can’t run from the city if you want to run the city,” Adams said during last week’s mayoral debate.

The murky details around Adam’s residency is just the latest development that could shake up the outcome of the race. In the past few days, progressive heavyweights Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Elizabeth Warren endorsed Maya Wiley for mayor.

Early voting starts Saturday. Primary election day is on June 22.

The TIP with Meg Cunningham

Florida Rep. Val Demings made her official entry into the Senate race to unseat Republican Sen. Marco Rubio Wednesday, with a campaign video where she said she would “never tire” from fighting for Floridians.

PHOTO: Rep. Val Demings speaks during the House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing in the Rayburn House office Building, July 29, 2020, on Capitol Hill.

It was long speculated Demings, a former Orlando police chief, would jump into the race. Without naming him, she took aim at the two-term Republican in her launch video, saying “there are some in Washington who prefer the same, old, tired ways of doing business,” as images of Rubio rolled across the screen. She even employed video from a 2016 presidential primary debate of former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie insulting the senator.

Rubio was on offense before Demings officially announced, telling Fox News on Monday that she wouldn’t “admit” to “being a socialist.” In a response to the Orlando Sentinel, Demings denied the allegation, adding “desperate people do desperate things.”

PHOTO: Senator Marco Rubio speaks during a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing, May 26, 2021, on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

She’s cited Republican opposition to Biden’s additional coronavirus relief plan in the Senate as a motivating force in her effort to increase the Democrats’ count in the upper chamber, sources told ABC News last month.


ABC News’ “Start Here” Podcast. Thursday morning’s episode features ABC News’ Anne Flaherty, who details President Joe Biden’s plan to buy COVID vaccine doses for use in the rest of the world. Department of the Interior Inspector General Mark Greenblatt explains his office’s report, which found officials did not clear Lafayette Park so that President Donald Trump could walk over to St. John’s Church for a photo op last year. And ABC News’ LZ Granderson tells us about his conversation with Dr. Anthony Fauci, who reflects on the legacy of the early response to HIV/AIDS.


Download the ABC News app and select “The Note” as an item of interest to receive the day’s sharpest political analysis.

The Note is a daily ABC News feature that highlights the day’s top stories in politics. Please check back tomorrow for the latest.

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