G-20 News

Biden reflects on US leadership and progress at G-20 summit

The president also underlined the commitments to fight against climate change.

President Joe Biden discussed the progress he has made with other world leaders at this weekend’s G-20 summit, including ways to tackle climate change, as the event s’ ended Sunday in Rome.

Kicking off his first solo press conference in four months, Biden called his meetings over the past three days “productive” and said America had resumed its role on the world stage by working with its allies.

Biden touted the goals that were achieved at the summit, including leaders around the world endorsing a 15% global minimum tax and international coordination to deal with the supply chain crisis across the globe.

During the summit, Biden highlighted American leadership on the world stage, a campaign pledge he sought to keep.

“I look forward to continuing to make progress on critical global issues as we head to Glasgow because of what we have seen again here in Rome, what I think is the power of America coming forward and working with it. our allies and partners make progress on issues that matter to us all, ”said Biden

The president in particular praised his face-to-face meetings with world leaders.

“There is really no substitute for face-to-face discussions and negotiations between leaders when it comes to building understanding and cooperation,” Biden said. “When you look someone straight in the eye when you try to finish – they know me, I know them, we can make things happen together. “

He also referred to his meeting at the G20 with the E3 countries – France, Germany and the United Kingdom – on the state of Iran’s nuclear program and his return to the negotiating table.

“We came together to reiterate our shared belief that diplomacy is the best way to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, and we discussed how best to encourage Iran to resume serious negotiations of good faith, ”Biden said of the meeting.

Biden answered questions from ABC’s Cecilia Vega about her climate proposal which is part of her reconciliation plan that Democrats in Washington are still working to push through to the president’s office.

The president said the United States would be able to meet his administration’s goal of reducing emissions by 2030 by 50%. When asked if he would be able to tackle climate change solely on the basis of incentives and not punitive measures, the president said he did not believe people should be punished.

Biden cited the success of tax credits for green renovations, such as solar panel installations, and commitments by automakers to increase their electric fleets as examples of industries already supporting the fight against climate change.

“Everyone knows which way this is going and there is no indication that there has to be a punitive effort to get people to react the way we have to. At least I don’t believe so,” he said. he declares.

Biden became moved when asked about his meeting with Pope Francis on Friday. The visit came as U.S. Catholic bishops are divided over an offer to Biden, the second Catholic president in U.S. history, to commune on his support for abortion rights.

The president told reporters that the Pope told him he was a good Catholic and should continue to receive Communion.

Biden declined to say whether his visit with Francis would end the debate among the conservative bishops, saying “a lot of this is personal.”

He praised the Pope, calling him a “really honest man” and that he was “everything I have learned about Catholicism”.

Biden recalled the time Francis met him and his family during the Pope’s visit to the United States in 2015. The 10- to 15-minute reunion took place just a few months after Beau Biden’s death. cancer, and the president said Francis’s words had brought great comfort to his family.

“He knew about himself. He knew what he was doing. He knew who he was. He knew where he was going to school. He knew what a man he was,” Biden said. “It had such a cathartic impact on [Beau’s] my children and my wife and our family, that it meant a lot “,

ABC News’ Jordyn Phelps and Ivan Pereira contributed to this report.