What Allies and Partners Expect from a Biden Administration
Transatlantic Policy Implications of the 2020 U.S. Election
The Trump years have not been easy on allies and partners. Trump’s “America First” transactional approach to foreign policy upended assumptions and destabilized relationships. But the Trump approach was not all, and not uniformly bad for all partners. Both in New Delhi and Warsaw partners found productive ways to work with President Trump’s team and Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdoğan found in Trump a “kindred spirit,” according to our Ankara chief Özgür Ünlühisarcıklı. For Paris, Trump’s fights with Europe and disregard for NATO were seen as helpful prodding for greater European ambitions.
Yet many would agree with Portugal’s foreign minister, who recently said at the Foreign Policy Forum in Berlin that allies “were treated by the Trump administration not as allies, but as enemies.” The Biden Administration promises to reintroduce many familiar faces, from Antony Blinken as Secretary of State and Linda Thomas-Greenfield as UN Ambassador, and some welcome stability. President-elect Biden has made it clear that he wants to repair America’s relationships and reclaim U.S. leadership by example. Biden’s efforts will be welcomed and supported by partners and allies, but—as you will read in the country portraits below—it will not be easy going.
The views expressed in GMF publications and commentary are the views of the author alone.