In an appearance on ABC in October, then-candidate Joe Biden argued that presidents should avoiding using executive orders to impose legislation from the executive office.
Biden said to George Stephanopoulos that he would not be able to enact legislation without the votes necessary in Congress to do so.
"I've got to get the votes," Biden said. "I gotta get the votes. That's why y'know, the one thing that I, I have this strange notion. We're a democracy. Some of my Republican friends and some of my Democratic friends even occasionally 'well if you can't get the votes then by executive order you've got to so something.'
"Things you can't do by executive order unless you're a dictator. We're a democracy. We need a consensus," Biden said, before winning the election and going on to sign more executive orders in his first week in office than any other president ever in the history of the United States.
that are "things you can't do by executive order unless you're a dictator. We're a democracy, we need consensus."
President Biden has issued 33 executive actions in his first six days, outpacing all of his predecessors by a large margin.
The executive actions have taken on a variety of issues including climate change, the military service eligibility, bans on international travelers, mask mandates, and so many other things that Biden believed should be governed by executive fiat.
Former President Barack Obama, under whom Biden served as Vice President, was a notable proponent of executive orders, notoriously declaring "I've got a pen, and I've got a phone" as he faced a hostile Congress.
Despite the Democratic Party controlling both chambers of Congress, Biden still seems to be more inclined towards executive order. The number of executive actions he has taken in his first days in office has been unprecedented.