What Would a Biden Presidency Look Like? Obama’s White House Photographer Picks Six Photos That Offer Clues

For years, Pete Souza, the former chief official White House photographer of President Barack Obama, stayed behind the camera. But in The Way I See It, a new documentary from filmmaker Dawn Porter, the lens is trained squarely on him. The film, in select theaters on Sept. 18 and premiering on MSNBC on Oct. 9, focuses on his work during the Obama administration as well as the years he spent photographing President Ronald Reagan. “What I was trying to do was look for these authentic moments,” Souza tells TIME about his tenure in both administrations. “The fleeting moments that not only reflect what’s happening in front of you, but that reveal what the president is like as a human being.”

What Would a Biden Presidency Look Like? Obama’s White House Photographer Picks Six Photos That Offer Clues

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In recent years, Souza has become more outspoken, particularly about his own feelings on President Trump, on his Instagram account, where he has more than 2 million followers. There, he shares photographs from his time in the White House, many of which are accompanied by snarky captions that compare the current president to the previous one. The popularity of his account led to the 2018 publication of his most recent book Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents. He goes even further in The Way I See It, revealing more of his personal life onscreen. “This puts me in a more public footing, which is a little uncomfortable for me,” Souza tells TIME. “But at the same time, I couldn’t not agree to do this film. I feel so strongly about the institution of the presidency and how it’s being ripped to shreds by this guy.”

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Souza hopes that viewers of the film can draw connections between both Reagan and Obama through their appearance in photographs. “Whether you agree with their politics or policies, they’re decent human beings and they’re empathetic,” Souza says. “They know the presidency is about us and not about them.” Throughout the documentary, he discusses what it was like to have such unfettered access to Barack Obama and how he was able to showcase the former president’s humanity through pictures. In seeing authentic moments of a person exercising their capacity for empathy, we can understand what type of leader they are, Souza says.

Given the time he spent in the Obama White House, Souza also had a high level of access to the current Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, when he served as Vice President alongside Obama. TIME asked Souza to choose photographs he took of Biden during that time to discuss what he thinks voters can glean about Biden as a leader, and what a Biden presidency might look like.

Reaching out across the aisle



Barack Obama, Mike Lee, Sheldon Whitehouse sitting at a table: President Barack Obama talks with Rep. Rual Labrador as Vice President Joe Biden talks with Sen. Mike Lee following a meeting with bipartisan Members of Congress to discuss criminal justice reform, in the Cabinet Room of the White House, on Feb. 24, 2015. Official White House Photo by Pete Souza


© Official White House Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama talks with Rep. Rual Labrador as Vice President Joe Biden talks with Sen. Mike Lee following a meeting with bipartisan Members of Congress

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Biden says Senate should wait to replace Ginsburg, Trump lowers flags at White House

President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden both offered condolences after the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday after a battle with cancer.

Biden, who called her “unflinching” and a “consistent and reliable” jurist who cared about every American’s civil rights, said in brief remarks in Wilmington, Delaware, on Friday night that her replacement should not come until after the election, despite Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., calling for a hearing and a vote.

“Her opinions and her dissent are going to continue to shape the basis for our law for a generation. And, you know, tonight and the coming days, we should focus on the loss of the justice, and her enduring legacy,” he said. “But there is no doubt, let me be clear, that the voters should pick a president, the president should pick the justice for the Senate to consider. “

During Barack Obama’s presidency, there was a political controversy when he nominated federal appeals court Judge Merrick Garland after the passing of Justice Antonin Scalia, a conservative jurist, in 2016 and McConnell refused to allow a hearing citing an election year.

Later Friday night, Biden tweeted a statement on Ginsburg, describing her as an “American hero.”

“Ruth Bader Ginsburg stood for all of us. She was an American hero, a giant of legal doctrine, and a relentless voice in the pursuit of that highest American ideal: Equal Justice Under Law. May her memory be a blessing to all people who cherish our Constitution and its promise,” Biden said.

Ginsburg’s death is likely to set off a fierce political battle between Republicans and Democrats over filling her seat on the nine-person Supreme Court, which already has a conservative majority.

Trump, who held a campaign rally in Bemidji, Minnesota, told reporters after the event that he was stunned to hear about her passing.

“She led an amazing life. What else can you say? She was an amazing woman, whether you agreed or not, she was an amazing woman who led an amazing life,” Trump told reporters. “I’m actually saddened to hear that. I am saddened to hear that.”

Trump also tweeted out a more complete statement on her passing Friday night, calling her a “titan of the law.”

“A fighter to the end, Justice Ginsburg battled cancer, and other very long odds, throughout her remarkable life. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Ginsburg family and their loved ones during this difficult time,” Trump said in the statement. “May her memory be a great and magnificent blessing to

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State Dept. provides House Dems docs previously given to Ron Johnson’s Biden probe

The State Department on Friday turned over 16,000 pages of documents to a House committee that were previously given to Senate Republicans investigating Joe and Hunter Biden — providing Democrats with key information as a top GOP senator prepares to release a report expected to be highly critical of the Democratic presidential nominee.

The massive document production to the House Foreign Affairs Committee led Chairman Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) to rescind his July subpoena for the documents and pause the panel’s contempt proceedings against Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

It also comes as Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), who is leading the GOP probe targeting the Bidens, is teasing a forthcoming report detailing the allegations, which center on Biden’s son Hunter and his role on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company. Johnson has said his report is likely to be published next week.

Democrats have described Johnson’s probe as a politically motivated smear campaign against President Donald Trump’s challenger that has already been discredited and tainted by Russian propaganda. The intelligence community has identified a pro-Kremlin Ukrainian lawmaker, Andriy Derkach, as an agent of a Russian disinformation campaign intended to denigrate Biden.

“This ‘investigation’ is obviously designed to boost the president’s campaign and tear down his opponent, while our own intelligence community warns it is likely to amplify Russian disinformation,” Engel said in a statement. “We’re going to make sure the American people see the whole picture, not just cherrypicked information aimed at breathing new life into debunked conspiracy theories.”

Democrats have raised concerns that material gathered by Derkach, who met in December with Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, has been laundered into Johnson’s material. Johnson has strenuously denied the allegations, but Democrats sought the documents he obtained from the State Department to understand the direction his probe is taking. POLITICO first reported that Derkach mailed information about the Bidens to Johnson, but Johnson’s office has denied receiving anything from Derkach.

Derkach has pushed many of the same claims against Biden that Johnson, who chairs the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, is pursuing. Johnson’s probe centers on allegations that a Democratic public-affairs firm sought to leverage Hunter Biden’s position on the board of Burisma in order to influence the Obama-era State Department.

Johnson has also alleged that Hunter Biden’s role was itself a conflict of interest because his father, who at the time was the vice president, was spearheading U.S. policy toward Ukraine.

Johnson has drawn condemnation in recent weeks for characterizing his probe as potentially fatal to Biden’s presidential candidacy, a political calculation that Democrats said removed any doubt about the goal of his investigation.

Some Republicans have expressed discomfort with Johnson’s probe, too. Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) last week described it as a “political exercise” and said he opposed Johnson’s efforts to subpoena additional witnesses as part of the investigation. POLITICO reported earlier this year that Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), then-chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, warned Johnson that his probe could aid Russia’s

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Pete Souza On What a Biden Presidency Might Look Like

For years, Pete Souza, the former chief official White House photographer of President Barack Obama, stayed behind the camera. But in The Way I See It, a new documentary from filmmaker Dawn Porter, the lens is trained squarely on him. The film, in select theaters on Sept. 18 and premiering on MSNBC on Oct. 9, focuses on his work during the Obama administration as well as the years he spent photographing President Ronald Reagan. “What I was trying to do was look for these authentic moments,” Souza tells TIME about his tenure in both administrations. “The fleeting moments that not only reflect what’s happening in front of you, but that reveal what the president is like as a human being.”

In recent years, Souza has become more outspoken, particularly about his own feelings on President Trump, on his Instagram account, where he has more than 2 million followers. There, he shares photographs from his time in the White House, many of which are accompanied by snarky captions that compare the current president to the previous one. The popularity of his account led to the 2018 publication of his most recent book Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents. He goes even further in The Way I See It, revealing more of his personal life onscreen. “This puts me in a more public footing, which is a little uncomfortable for me,” Souza tells TIME. “But at the same time, I couldn’t not agree to do this film. I feel so strongly about the institution of the presidency and how it’s being ripped to shreds by this guy.”

Souza hopes that viewers of the film can draw connections between both Reagan and Obama through their appearance in photographs. “Whether you agree with their politics or policies, they’re decent human beings and they’re empathetic,” Souza says. “They know the presidency is about us and not about them.” Throughout the documentary, he discusses what it was like to have such unfettered access to Barack Obama and how he was able to showcase the former president’s humanity through pictures. In seeing authentic moments of a person exercising their capacity for empathy, we can understand what type of leader they are, Souza says.

Given the time he spent in the Obama White House, Souza also had a high level of access to the current Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, when he served as Vice President alongside Obama. TIME asked Souza to choose photographs he took of Biden during that time to discuss what he thinks voters can glean about Biden as a leader, and what a Biden presidency might look like.

Reaching out across the aisle

President Barack Obama talks with Rep. Rual Labrador as Vice President Joe Biden talks with Sen. Mike Lee following a meeting with bipartisan Members of Congress to discuss criminal justice reform, in the Cabinet Room of the White House, on Feb. 24, 2015.

President Barack Obama talks with Rep. Rual Labrador as Vice President Joe Biden talks with Sen. Mike Lee following a meeting with bipartisan Members of Congress to discuss criminal justice reform, in the Cabinet Room of the White House, on Feb. 24, 2015.

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

“This is Biden talking to a Republican

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Ex-White House Staffer Says Trump Has ‘Disregard for Human Life’ and She’s Voting for Biden

President Donald Trump speaks to reporters at the White House during a coronavirus task force briefing on April 23.

A former White House staffer this week slammed the Trump administration’s novel coronavirus response as a “failure” and said she would be voting for Joe Biden — arguing President Donald Trump has displayed a “flat out disregard for human life.”

In response, the White House dismissed Olivia Troye as “disgruntled” and her assessment as “baseless.”

Troye — who worked as an aide for Vice President Mike Pence and who was on the coronavirus task force — spoke to The Washington Post in an article published Thursday.

Her striking comments come as nearly 200,000 people have died in the U.S. from the respiratory illness. At least 6.6 million Americans have contracted the virus so far, according to a New York Times tracker.

Troye worked for the Trump administration for the last two years and left in August. She told the Post that the president’s “main concern was the economy and his reelection.”

She said his response has cost lives.

“The president’s rhetoric and his own attacks against people in his administration trying to do the work, as well as the promulgation of false narratives and incorrect information of the virus have made this ongoing response a failure,” she told the paper.

The White House quickly responded with pre-written statements about Troye’s time working for the administration.

White House spokesman Judd Deere said Troye was a “disgruntled former detailee” and “her assertions have no basis in reality and are flat out inaccurate.”

Troye, 43, told a different story to the Post, saying she helped organize “every single meeting” that the coronavirus task force had, helped advise Vice President Pence, 61, on the coronavirus throughout the pandemic and had gone so far as to help his senior aides write a mid-June editorial in the Wall Street Journal that defended the administration’s response to the virus.

“It was ludicrous,” she said of the op-ed, which hailed the Trump administration’s pandemic response as a success.

Troye described herself to the Post as a “lifelong Republican,” though she said she did not vote for Trump in 2016.

She is not Trump’s only coronavirus critic: The president’s handling of the pandemic has been scrutinized going back to the spring, including for problems with testing and for sending conflicting messages about the importance of wearing masks and practicing social distancing.

In the summer, he infamously mused aloud if injecting disinfectant could be a successful treatment.

Audio released by journalist Bob Woodward shows Trump , 74, admitting that he knowingly downplayed the virus’ true threat — which he publicly said was similar to the flu — because he wanted to avoid “panic.”

The president has also contradicted his own health experts on a number of matters, such as the timeline of a coronavirus vaccine.

RELATED: CDC Director Says to Wear Masks as COVID-19 Vaccine Won’t Be Ready Until 2021, Clashing with Trump

Vice President Mike Pence (left) and

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Ex-Pence adviser and White House Coronavirus Task Force member endorses Biden: ‘It’s country over party’

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said during Thursday night’s CNN Presidential Town Hall in Scranton that if elected president, he will ensure that police reforms will be made by putting together a coalition of police chiefs, officers, unions, and civil rights and community leaders.

They will “sit at a table and agree on the fundamental things that have to be done, including much more rigorous background checks [for those] that apply for and become officers,” Biden said. He called the “vast majority” of police officers “decent, honorable people,” adding that “one of the things I’ve found is, the only people who don’t like bad cops more than we don’t like them are police officers. And so what we have to do is we have to have a much more transparent means by which we provide for accountability within police departments.”

Moderator Anderson Cooper asked Biden about one of author Bob Woodward’s recent interviews with President Trump, during which Woodward asked Trump if he benefited from white privilege. “No, I don’t feel that way at all,” Trump responded. Biden said he feels the opposite way, and did benefit “just because I don’t have to go through what my Black brothers and sisters have had to go through.”

Biden pivoted and began talking about classism, and how “growing up here in Scranton, we’re used to guys who look down their nose at us. We are used to people looking at us and thinking more suckers, look at us and think that we’re not equivalent to them. If you didn’t have a college degree, you must be stupid.” This is the wrong attitude to have, Biden said, adding, “We are as good as anybody else, and guys like Trump who inherited everything and squandered what they inherited are the people that I’ve always had a problem with, not the people who are busting their neck.” Catherine Garcia

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Biden White House economic team could include Elizabeth Warren, Lael Brainard

Democratic presidential hopefuls Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe Biden shake hands as they arrive onstage for the third Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season.

Frederic J. Brown | AFP | Getty Images

Despite an uncertain economic outlook and a diverse array of advisors on Joe Biden’s economic team, Wall Street speculators and Beltway wonks have nonetheless drummed up a list of policymakers who could play roles in a potential Biden White House.

The cast ranges from progressive favorite Sen. Elizabeth Warren to equitability economist Heather Boushey. Longtime Biden confidant Jared Bernstein is also thought to be a top contender for a role, while others speculate that Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard could be on the short list.

CNBC reached out to several economists and politicians who reportedly are advising the Biden campaign. All declined to offer comment for this story and on their interactions with the campaign.

The economy — along with the coronavirus crisis itself — are likely to be Biden’s top priorities should he defeat President Donald Trump in November. The former vice president holds a lead of approximately 7 percentage points in polling averages and narrowly edges Trump in several swing-state polls.

The U.S. unemployment rate is still over 8%, more than 13 million American workers continue to receive unemployment benefits, and Covid-19 remains far from contained and could rebound this fall as people spend more time indoors.

So whom Biden chooses to lead the White House’s economic policy will likely have more impact than usual for a newly elected president.

“Steven Mnuchin emerged as the key negotiator between House Democrats and the White House, and demonstrated the key role the secretary of Treasury can play,” wrote Tom Block, policy analyst at FundStrat Global Advisors. “If VP Biden wins, getting the economy back on track will undoubtedly be his highest priority.”

Here some of the people considered to be leading candidates for economic roles in a potential Biden administration.

Elizabeth Warren

No conversation about Biden’s future Cabinet would be complete without a mention of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, whose crusader-like devotion to holding Wall Street accountable has made her something of a progressive icon.

Though she was among Biden’s challengers in the Democratic primary, her deep knowledge of the U.S. financial system and bankruptcy law makes her a compelling contender for Treasury secretary. She and Biden now reportedly hold regular phone calls to discuss policy. Biden has touted Warren-endorsed ideas ranging from topics such as personal bankruptcy and expanding Social Security to ending student-loan debt for millions.

But a key force that could potentially doom Warren’s appointment to lead the Treasury is her indisputable value to Democrats as a senator.

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) delivers a campaign speech at East Los Angeles College on March 2, 2020 in Monterey Park, California.

Mario Tama | Getty Images

Even if Biden wins the White House, the composition of the Senate is far less certain and Democrats may be hard-pressed to

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Biden campaign manager boasts of a ‘far more expanded map’ to the White House

Joe Biden’s campaign manager asserted Tuesday that the Democratic presidential nominee will have “multiple pathways” to the 270 Electoral College votes he will need to boot Donald Trump from the White House.



a man wearing a suit and tie


© AP Photo/Patrick Semansky


“I would say based on the stability of the race [and] the strong support the vice president has, that we maintain the same pathways and have seen an expanded footprint on states that are in play than we have seen in recent memory,” Jennifer O’Malley Dillon said in a POLITICO Playbook interview.

Pointing to traditionally red Arizona as one potential expansion of Biden’s electoral map she is “super bullish” on, O’Malley Dillon contended that the campaign is working to keep a number of different states in play come November to allow the campaign flexibility. She also pointed to the Democratic nominee’s fairly consistent leads in swing states like Florida, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan, though some polls in those states have shown tighter races as of late.

While she conceded that the race has tightened over the past month or so, O’Malley Dillon insisted the campaign had expected what once was a commanding lead for Biden to shrink some, attributing the shift to this year’s electorate being more polarized than in 2016, with less of a pull toward third party candidates.

“We have a far more expanded map,” she concluded, and “we are playing that.”

In a Playbook interview last month, Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien also asserted that Trump’s campaign has multiple pathways to victory in November.

“We have a quiet confidence based on our pathway,” Stepien said, stressing the need for “optionality.”

“I’m asked all the time, how are you going to run the table in the Upper Midwest again? He just has to win one of three,” he continued, pointing out that Trump “won with 306 electoral votes, not 270, not on the button. We have some cushion there.

But O’Malley Dillon contended that Trump’s campaign is not as well-positioned as the president frequently boasts, arguing that despite campaigning in Nevada this week, and a pledge to win New Hampshire, Trump is “not playing heavily” in either state and his campaign is “doubling down” in states like Georgia and North Carolina.

While Stepien said the Trump campaign views “near misses” in 2016 in states like New Hampshire and Minnesota as potential pickups, O’Malley Dillon argued that goal has not translated financially.

“There’s so much work to be done, we have to earn every vote but we feel very confident that we have an expanded map here, and multiple pathways to 270, and the resources to be able to execute on that strategy,” she said.

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What would a Biden White House mean for fintech?

A combination of Joe Biden’s steady lead in the polls and its own political hopes has the financial technology world wondering: What would a Biden presidency mean for fintech policies?

The former vice president’s campaign hasn’t said much specifically about financial technology, but its ideas on traditional financial services — credit reporting, redlining, access to banking services — could have a profound impact on the companies that have eroded the strength of big financial institutions by using technology to encroach on their territory.

The fintech sector is overwhelmingly backing Biden in terms of campaign contributions, although the amounts pale compared with its bigger and older siblings in technology and finance, which are also betting big on the White House going blue in November.

For example, PayPal’s employees and affiliates have given $263,300 so far in 2020 across all federal races, including $34,400 for Biden and $5,100 for President Donald Trump, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. A CQ Roll Call review of other major fintechs finds similar margins at firms like Intuit Inc., Square Inc. and Stripe Inc. For comparison, affiliates of Alphabet Inc., Google’s parent company, have given the former vice president more than $1 million and Trump just under $30,000, while JPMorgan Chase & Co. affiliates have supported Biden over Trump to the tune of $255,700 to $77,500.

Political prognosticators give Biden the edge with less than two months left to go until the election. FiveThirtyEight’s average of national polls puts Biden up on Trump, 50.5 percent to 43.5 percent, and Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales currently projects Biden winning 319 electoral votes to Trump’s 188, leaving Georgia and North Carolina’s combined 31 votes a “Toss-up.”

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White House to host ‘Made in America’ event as Trump, Biden battle for ‘buy American’ mantle

EXCLUSIVE: President Trump is expected to host the fourth “Made in America” event at the White House next month, featuring American-made products and American-based companies from all 50 states.

The event is set to take place at the White House on Monday, Oct. 5., and is part of the president’s “Buy American, Hire American” and “Made in America” efforts, according to the White House.

BIDEN PUSHES POPULIST ‘MADE IN AMERICA’ PLAN TO PUMP UP ECONOMY

“Over the past four years, President Trump has taken unprecedented action to empower American workers, bring manufacturing jobs back to the country, increase the production of domestic-made goods, and energize the American economy,” White House spokesman Judd Deere told Fox News.

“The president looks forward to hosting incredible companies and their American-made products representing all 50 United States at the White House next month for what has become an annual event,” Deere added.

A White House official told Fox News that Lockheed Martin, based in Maryland, which participated in the event last year, will feature its products during this year’s showcase as well, while companies from 49 other states will be first-time participants.

President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference on the North Portico of the White House, Monday, Sept. 7, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference on the North Portico of the White House, Monday, Sept. 7, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Some of the companies expected to showcase their American-made products next month include Correct Craft, which will represent both Florida and North Carolina, Kan Jam from New York, Cruise Custom Flags from Kentucky, and Nautique Boat Company from Florida.

“Our team is thrilled to represent both Florida and North Carolina in the White House Made in America event,” Correct Craft CEO Bill Yeargin told Fox News. “We are a unique net exporter to dozens of countries around the world. Both our Nautique and Parker teams could not be more excited to show off our product at the White House!”

Meanwhile, a White House official touted the president’s efforts with regard to the economy, specifically his support for American-based companies and products over the last four years, telling Fox News that more than 6.7 million manufacturing jobs were created and more than 12,000 new factories opened under his administration.

The official doubled down, telling Fox News that the president has “delivered” on his “promises to help American workers, businesses and manufacturing,” citing the regulation cuts, the creation of Opportunity Zones to spur investments in what they called “forgotten” communities, ending or reworking trade deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership and NAFTA.

TRUMP HOSTS 3RD ANNUAL ‘MADE IN AMERICA’ SHOWCASE AT THE WHITE HOUSE

News of the event comes as Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden wrestle to own the “made in America” phrase in the 2020 presidential election.

While the president has touted the economy and bringing jobs back to the U.S. during his term, on the campaign trail the former vice president has attempted to highlight the economic losses the country has faced amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Biden in July announced his own “made in America” push —

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