Former Vice President Joe Biden has told Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi that she’ll be welcome in the White House when he assumes office early next year. Biden and his running mate, Senator Kamala Harris, met with Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Friday.
Biden made some brief remarks in front of the cameras before the in-person meeting with the Democratic leadership about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic at his transition headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware.
“In my Oval Office, mi casa, you casa [sic],” Biden said, wearing a mask. “I’m going to need you. I hope we’re going to spend a lot of time together.”
All the participants in the meeting were also wearing masks and were socially distancing at separate tables.
Cameras captured only some short footage before Biden and Harris held a private meeting with Pelosi and Schumer.
The Biden-Harris transition team later released a joint readout of the meeting that didn’t contain many details of the conversation.
The readout released to the press said the four Democrats “discussed the surges in COVID-19 infection rates and the corresponding economic strain that communities, working families, and small businesses are experiencing across the country.
President-elect Joe Biden to Speaker Pelosi: “In my Oval Office, mi casa, you casa. I’m going to need you. I hope we’re going to spend a lot of time together.” pic.twitter.com/GnR3suaqJL
— The Hill (@thehill) November 21, 2020
“They agreed that Congress needed to pass a bipartisan emergency aid package in the lame duck session, and that package should include resources to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, relief for working families and small businesses, support for state and local governments trying to keep frontline workers on the payroll, expanded unemployment insurance, and affordable health care for millions of families.”
Biden also brought up his agenda for his first 100 days in office, a period which is often viewed as emblematic of the next four years of a new administration. He said his aims would include “taking aggressive action to contain COVID-19, providing resources to small businesses, families, schools, and state and local governments to power our economic recovery, and investing in the middle class to build back better.”
Pelosi will almost certainly be re-elected as Speaker after Democrats retained control of the House of Representatives. However, she will lead a reduced majority after disappointing election results.
Democrats had been widely predicted to increase their seats in the House and possibly take the Senate. The balance of power in the Senate now hinges on two run-off elections in Georgia on January 5. If the Democratic candidates can win both, it will tip control to them and would be a major victory for an incoming Biden administration.
Start your unlimited Newsweek trial