Biden President: The symbolism of Joe Biden’s new Oval Office (and what has changed from Trump’s office)


It’s common for new US presidents to add their personal touch to the Oval Office in the White House upon arrival. And the changes made by Joe Biden are largely a statement of intent.

The president’s office, in the west wing of the White House, is decorated with portraits and busts of some of the most famous and influential leaders in the country’s history.

“It was important for President Biden to enter an Oval Office that looked like the United States and start to give a vision of who will be president,” Ashley Williams, deputy director of operations for the Oval Office, told the Washington Post. Exclusive visit.

Gone are the image of Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States and the populist leader Trump knew so much and whose government also faced rejection despite never having been held accountable.

His image, to the left of the desk bench “Tough”, has been replaced by one by Benjamin Franklin, one of the nation’s founding fathers and a prominent writer, scientist, and philosopher.

The Washington Post indicated that Franklin’s photo was intended to represent President Biden’s interest in relying on science in fighting the Coronavirus epidemic.

Martin Luther King Way Rosa Parks

From his desk, Biden will look up and see, by the fireplace, a bust of Martin Luther King and Robert F. Kennedy, two men the president regularly mentions their influence on the civil rights movement, according to the US press. .

Another statue in the room is that of prominent activist Rosa Parks.

Busts by Rosa Parks and Abraham Lincoln. GETTY PICTURES

Above the fireplace is a portrait of Franklin Roosevelt, the president who led the country through the Great Depression and World War II.

A painting of another former president, Thomas Jefferson, accompanied by another man who usually had disagreements: Former Chancellor of the Exchequer Alexander Hamilton, “a symbol of how differences of opinion are expressed within the Republic’s fence, indicated the president’s office,” the Washington Post reported.

Portraits of Jefferson and Hamilton (left and right) remained by the fireplace, placed differently, but the central portrait of George Washington was replaced by a Franklin D. Roosevelt painting. Environmental Protection Agency

Duos of other famous former presidents, George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, have also been posted.

Very prominent details

But if there were details that caught the attention of the public in particular on social networks, it was the bust of the leader of the Spanish Confederation, Cesar Chávez.

The bust of Chávez (1927–1993) sits behind the armchair of Biden’s office, at a table and in a distinct place: among the many family portraits.

A bust of Cesar Chávez stands among the family photos of Biden. GETTY PICTURES

A native of Arizona, Chávez was the founder of the United Farm Workers Union and one of the most important Latin leaders in defending the civil rights of Spaniards and farm workers, most of whom are immigrants.

The activist made the cry “Yes, we can”, created by his union partner Dolores Huerta, popular and years later, Barack Obama was embracing his campaign for the presidency.

Golden curtains outside

The other thing Biden poked on his arrival was the golden curtains Trump put in place when he took office in 2017.

Gold has been replaced by a darker shade of blue and gold drapes that adorned the same office when Democratic President Bill Clinton was in office, according to the Washington Post.

The flags of the various branches of the army were also replaced by the American flag, and the other by the presidential seal.

Andrew Jackson’s portrait, shown in this photo, has vanished from the Oval Office. White House

Biden also decided to get rid of the controversial bust of British leader Winston Churchill.

Trump had promised to return the statue to the Oval Office after his predecessor, Barack Obama, removed it.

Then the then foreign secretary, Boris Johnson – now the UK’s prime minister – accused Obama of “ancestral hatred of the British Empire”.

On this occasion, his spokesman moved away from controversy: “The Oval Office is the private office of the President of the Republic and it is up to him to decorate it as he pleases.”

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