Having won the election for U.S. President, Joe Biden now has an opportunity to take stock of America, to assess where we have been and where we are going. With voting now behind us, I see several trends that will challenge President-elect Biden and his team.

We do not seem to have a strategy to fight COVID-19. Healthcare, the number of Americans with insurance fell by 5 million this year, largely because of job losses caused by the pandemic.

On the international scene, our working relationship with allies has been an admired part of American foreign policy since the end of World War II.  President Trump, however, has been comfortable with authoritarian leaders like Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi Jinping, and has been unwilling to follow our traditional policy of working closely with our allies, especially in Europe. 

President Trump has ignored our advocacy for human rights that had been a distinguishing part of American foreign policy for decades.

Another trend is that Americans have less trust in one another, less confidence in the decency of our fellow Americans, making it more difficult to resolve problems. 

By stepping up to these challenges, President Biden will lift our spirits and make us feel better about our country.

Our country and its institutions are, of course, imperfect. Not every challenge can be addressed at once. All of this puts a heavy, but not insurmountable burden on the President elect. In addressing them, he certainly will need help – and lots of it. 

We are the United States of America – an exceptional nation, as we say – “if we do not step up, who will?”

Mr. Hamilton is a former U.S. congressman from Indiana.

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