In the numbers: President Biden after two years

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WASHINGTON (TBEN) — President Joe Biden will celebrate his two-year term in office on Friday. That represents 730 days since its inauguration — and a bunch of other numbers, too.

The story of the first half of Biden’s tenure, at least by the numbers, is a mixed bag. It includes a long-sought $1 trillion bill to support the country’s bridges, roads and other infrastructure, but also the unwelcome milestone of historic inflation. There have been a huge number of COVID-19 vaccinations, but nearly 680,000 people have died from the disease. Biden has visited three dozen states and spent nearly 200 days in whole or in part in his home state of Delaware.

A look at some revealing data points after two years for the 46th president:

6.5%: Annual inflation remains stubbornly high, but is slowly declining after reaching a four-decade high of 9.1% in June.

10.46 million: The latest figures from the Labor Department show that there are more than 10 million job openings in the US, nearly 1.8 jobs for every unemployed person. Unemployment rate of 3.5%, which is the lowest point in 53 years. Zero recessions – so far.

$31.38 trillion: Federal debt was $27.6 trillion when Biden took office.

$24.2 billion: The amount of US security assistance provided to Ukraine since the Russian invasion nearly 11 months ago.

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38: The number of High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, known as HIMARS, pledged to send to Ukraine. A game changer, allowing Ukrainian troops to fire at Russian targets from afar and then drive off before the artillery can engage them.

2.38 million: For the 12 months ended September 30, 2022, Customs and Border Protection reported almost 2.4 million times that migrants were stopped at the U.S. border, a record increase driven by sharp increases in Venezuelans, Cubans, and Nicaraguans. The previous high was 1.66 million in 2021.

97: Confirmation of Biden’s picks to the federal bench, including Supreme Court Justice Kentanji Brown Jackson, who surpasses the president’s two immediate predecessors.

89: The president has issued nine pardons and 80 commutations, far more than any of his recent predecessors at this time. Donald Trump had awarded 11 by then, George W. Bush seven. Barack Obama took no leniency measures in his first two years.

$3.36: The average price per gallon US motorists pay at the pump has fallen since peaking at $5.02 per gallon in June. Motorists paid an average of $2.39 per gallon the week Biden took office.

666 million: The number of COVID-19 vaccines administered to Americans under Biden. T gingy million had gotten the jab before Biden took office. The vaccine was not approved until late in Trump’s presidency.

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15.9%: The percentage of Americans age 5 and older who received an updated bivalent vaccine.

680,000: The recorded death toll from the coronavirus pandemic during Biden’s tenure. The worst pandemic in more than a century had already killed more than 400,000 Americans by Biden’s inauguration and a total of 1.1 million as of March 2020.

36: Biden has spread his tour across the country to promote his agenda, but has yet to reach Arkansas, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming.

197: There’s no place like home. The president spent 197 days in whole or in part in his home state of Delaware, traveling most weekends to his home near Wilmington or his vacation home on Rehoboth Beach, according to an TBEN tally. In addition to weekend visits, he has also made short trips for funerals, policy events, and to cast his vote in a Democratic primary.

6: Biden has spoken with Chinese President Xi Jinping six times since the start of his term. All but one were phone or video calls. They met in person on the sidelines of a summit in Indonesia in November.

22: The minimum number of times Biden has publicly relapsed into a nostalgic memory of an intimate conversation he had with Xi while visiting China when Biden was vice president. Biden said Xi asked him to define America and he answered with one word: Possibilities. Biden even squeezed in the anecdote at a party this week for the NBA champion Golden State Warriors.

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21: Biden held fewer solo or joint press conferences than his three most recent predecessors at the same time in their presidency.

$1 trillion: The amount allocated for roads, bridges, ports and more in Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure legislation, arguably the most significant legislative achievement of his first two years in office.

$40 billion: The amount in the infrastructure bill earmarked for repairing and rebuilding the nation’s bridges, the largest specific investment in bridges since the construction of the Eisenhower-era highway system.

43,000: The number of bridges in the US that the White House has rated as bad and in need of repair.

1: The president’s only state dinner to date honored French President Emmanuel Macron. Biden held back some of the traditional pomp — and celebrations — at the White House during the early part of his presidency over concerns about COVID-19.

0: None of Biden’s original cabinet appointees have left the administration.

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The Bharat Express News writers Kevin Vineys, Zeke Miller, Colleen Long, Chris Megerian and Josh Boak contributed to this report.