(Washington) Done: Joe Biden announced his 2024 presidential bid on Tuesday. But as a new campaign for the octogenarian president kicks off, what happened to the promises he made when he took office White House ?

At his inauguration on January 20, 2021, Joe Biden said, “My whole soul is strained toward this goal: to unite America.”

It will take more than one or even two terms to judge whether he has bridged the deep partisan divides that his predecessor Donald Trump had helped to deepen.

In the legislative elections of November 2022, failing to eliminate the radical right from the political landscape, the president and his party held it at bay during elections which took place peacefully.

Joe Biden has even rallied a few conservative parliamentarians around major investment projects and a law protecting marriage for all.

He also boasts of having promoted diversity like few presidents before him: Joe Biden is seconded by the first female vice president in US history, Kamala Harris, and is represented by a black spokeswoman and lesbian, Karine Jean-Pierre.

But the president, despite a rather pleasant personality and a centrist positioning, is deeply divided: according to a Reuters-Ipsos poll in December 2022, 85% of Republicans disapprove of his action, 76% of Democrats approve of him. His popularity rating with all voters remains low, at around 43% in mid-February 2023.

The United States has turned, through vaccinations, the page of the COVID-19 pandemic, a necessary condition for any restart.

And he was there. The world’s largest economy ended 2022 with growth of more than 2% and with a very low unemployment rate, well below 4%.

This rebound was accompanied by a historic surge in inflation that tested households. But prices were calming down at the start of 2023, seeming to confirm Joe Biden’s scenario of a “soft” landing.

The president also passed major investments in infrastructure, advanced industries and energy transition, the effects of which will be felt for years.

But inequality in the United States, already the most pronounced of any developed country, began to rise again in 2021, for the first time in a decade.

“America is back,” repeats Joe Biden, and he has reestablished infinitely more cordial relations than his predecessor Donald Trump with the country’s traditional allies.

Faced with the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, he was the pilot of the Western response, with blows of sanctions and military aid, until convincing Sweden and Finland to join NATO.

But the president is determined to put the interests of the United States first, in order to stand up to China, brutally if necessary.

He had promised to end America’s wars and ordered a withdrawal from Afghanistan which, at the end of August 2021, turned into a debacle.

To strengthen the United States in the Pacific zone, he blew the French a huge submarine contract with Australia, and, more broadly, does not let go of his reindustrialization projects, even if they irritate the Europeans and some Asian countries.

One of the first decisions of the 46th President of the United States was to revert to the great Paris climate agreement.

Joe Biden, who always takes care to link concern for the environment and job creation, has voted pharaonic investments in favor of energy transition and green mobility.

But this fiercely centrist president has also always been careful to protect American hydrocarbon supplies. And did not hesitate to compromise when necessary with a senator notoriously favorable to fossil fuels.

Three subjects emblematic of both the deepest divisions of America and the failures of Joe Biden, partly explained by his very limited institutional room for maneuver.

The President started his first term with no clear parliamentary dominance, he ended it with a divided Congress: a Democratic Senate, a Republican House of Representatives.

He also has against him many states governed by radical Republicans and a very conservative Supreme Court.

Joe Biden did not ban assault rifles as promised, despite several killings. He could or did not know how to do anything when the Supreme Court ended the constitutional right to abortion. Nor has he passed major legislation to protect African Americans’ access to the vote or to respond to police brutality.

The American president has put an end to the construction of the wall that Donald Trump wanted on the border with Mexico, but the arrivals of migrants continue without his having succeeded in reforming the immigration system.

Joe Biden has also not stemmed a wave of overdoses due to synthetic opiates.