Time magazine marks Biden’s first year with bleak cover

Artist Tim O’Brien depicts the president sitting in the Oval Office as a huge rain cloud looms above him

Jade Bremner
Friday 21 January 2022 16:51
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Time magazine has commemorated President Joe Biden’s first year in the White House with a damming front cover.

The “Year One” cover title reads “How the Biden Administration Lost Its Way” and the image created by artist Tim O’Brien depicts the president sitting in the Oval Office as he is shadowed by a huge rain cloud. He is surrounded by binders reading “inflation”, “Putin”, “voting rights”, and “Trump 2024”.

In the background is a box of Covid rapid antigen tests – referring to the fact the president has promised to give Americans 500 million tests free of charge, but has so far failed to increase access to at-home tests.

The concept follows Time magazine’s 1 Feb 2021 cover “Day One,” after the president was signed into office. The previous illustration showes the new president in a vandalised Oval Office, with graffiti on the Resolute Desk, and paper strewn about the place, a megaphone and MAGA hat is lying on the floor – suggesting the aftermath of the insurrection on 6 January.

“This new cover shows Biden in a cleaned-up office, but the tasks remain, and the mounting issues gather like storm clouds,” said Mr O’Brien of his latest cover.

A year after the president was sworn into office Time magazine journalists Molly Ball and Brian Bennett write; “The fate of Biden’s social-spending and climate package is more uncertain than ever. The pandemic he promised to bring to heel rages out of control. Inflation is at a four-decade high, cancelling out rising wages. The border is a mess. Violent crime continues to climb. His approval rating has sunk to the low 40s.”

The US is struggling to get a grip on the Omicron variant of coronavirus; the country has seen 17.5 million cases in the last 28 days, according to John’s Hopkins University data. “Voters hoped Biden would provide a sense of calm and steady leadership,” the journalists write.

Mr Trump has featured in storms and covered in water on the cover of Time magazines a number of times.

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