The President Biden’s Political Discourse Analysis

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Concepts of Discourse analysis


In communication, a context is a group of phrases surrounding any word to determine its meaning. The change in the meaning of words is because words change meaning depending on the user’s context, which is determined by the message he wants to deliver (Suciu, 2019). Additionally, the context might change depending on the events that developed a certain discourse related to it that will help be understood. Thus for one to interpret any phrase correctly, they have to consider the context.

When we consider the remarks given by President Biden during the signing of the COVID-19 hate crime act, one has to understand the context of the speech. The context of this speech can be determined by the events that led to the signing of this act (The White House, 2021). President Biden considered signing the hate crime act because of the hostility the Asian Americans were facing after the outbreak of Corona, which negatively affected nations. The blame was focused on them because the first case of Corona was discovered in the Asian country, China. With the Asian facing discrimination, the President opted to help them fight those challenges by signing these acts. Due to this context, some phrases were deemed acceptable and not discriminatory, as some might have been translated in case of a different event.

President Biden continuously addresses Americans of Asian origin as Asian Americans during his speech. Under normal circumstances, this could have been considered as discrimination by refereeing them as Asian Americans and not Americans. However, since this act was formulated to help them live a better life during that period, the context led to a different interpretation of the phrases. Therefore, other phrases such as ‘Communities of colour’ can be taken lightly due to context, unlike other occasions where they are referred to as discriminatory remarks. Many phrases must be interpreted correctly with the context from the speech analyzed to avoid conflict.

Discourse participants

In any conversation or discourse, there are the participants who can be people, physical present, virtual audience, who are directly or indirectly involved in its development. They include the speaker, audience, reporters, addressee and the readers. To identify the audience, one must use different linguistic cues. Some participants are directly named and easily identifiable such as the speaker, while others. While in other cases, contextual cues will help analyze the participants. Since participants are those in the discourse, adequate knowledge in roles, purpose, status and background will help identify them.

The speech by President Biden identifies the participants correctly by stating and naming them, while others are to be determined by the reader through contextual cues. The President is the primary participant as he is the speaker of the occasion. He states some of the big names, such as the senators who confuse by the names. The congress representative is defined when he states their roles, efforts and congratulates them for various positions. There are top officials from the justice system, such as the police and the court representatives. The President further identifies those he was addressing not present in that particular venue. The repeatedly talks of Asian Americans by naming pointing from the nannies to students who are discriminated against in schools. Further, the names of some of the present participants during his inauguration ceremony and people of colour.

In his speech, he gives room for the analysts to linguistic cues with the context to identify more participants. First, since this was an act signing ceremony, there must have been a high representative from the judiciary who will witness the signing. Further, since these Asian Americans were being bullied, there must have been the bullies who have not been mentioned. Second, by stating his inauguration ceremony, there must have been a crowd comprising the disciplinary forces representatives and common citizens who contributed to his election. Third, since this was an official state ceremony, the government press must have been present with other guests. The government always airs its official event hence a virtual audience witnessing the signing. Lastly, the readers of the speech are also considered as a participant.

Cohesion and coherence

Discourse is a collection of sentences, phrases and events that relate to each other to form a semantically coherent piece. Therefore, cohesion and Coherence can be related to the logical and sequential arrangement of entities to form a whole (Suciu, 2019). Cohesion connects the linguistic items to make ad discourse logical and meaningful. Cohesion can be further be divided into lexica and cohesive grammatical devices.

In the Presidents discourse, there are different elements of cohesions described. Considering terms such as Mr President, Mr Secretary General and Delegates belong to the same set of those top officials present. Other phrases such as Asian Americans, people of colour, global community grannies and students belong to the same linguistic cohesion devices. Other phrases such as he are used to refer to male figures, such as when used by the President to refer to senator is a grammatical cohesion tool. The President uses I regularly to refer to himself and us to a multitude of people in the context, including the President. Finally, it refers to some members who are not present but included in the context, such as when referring to Asian Americans who are being discriminated against.

On the other side, Coherence is being logical, consistent with delivering an intended message. In the speech, the President repeatedly jokes with senator Hirono by first showing confusion when he referred to him as Mazie and repeatedly calls him Mazie to make a joke as senator Hirono laughs. When introducing the Asian Americans to the speech, he explained the incident mass shooting in Atlanta. The President and his vice president went to Atlanta and Georgia to meet Asian American community. This phrase shows the Coherence and cohesion of why the President plans to sign acts against discrimination.

However, the President loses Coherence at the begging of his speech. He says, “And I also want to thank the — as I said — and to all — to all of the folks, all of the people here today who are involved in — those of you, whether you’re in the Congress or not, supporting this effort, I say: Thank you, thank you, thank you” (The White House, 2021). But unfortunately, this part of the speech lacks Coherence as there is no connectedness and consistence to interpret the meaning.

Inference and implicatures

In discourse, the speaker or writers do not always explain every piece of information clearly but give you a hint for one to figure out the expression or meaning. That process of drawing the implied meaning is referred to as inference (Suciu, 2019). On the other hand, implicature is the utterances is a discourse that the speaker expresses or implies within their communication even though it might not be expressed.

The President talks of discrimination against Asian Americans in particular states. He further used the phrases on the discrimination of the people of colour. This explanation leaves the whites as the only discriminators. Further, referring to Asian Americans who have been discriminated against, he was specific to Chinese or those with similar resemblance since the virus first originated from China.

When the President decided to sign into act the law against hate for fear of discrimination, he explained that he feared xenophobia. He implicated that this discrimination was specifically against those of different origins other than the USA. The USA is a diverse nation, and the number could evenly match those of American origin; thus, if the war broke, there would be no winner as all people would lose. Additionally, he is signing the act to warn the primary discriminators from engaging in such acts.

Use of language in discourse


The President identifies the problem in the USA system and decides to give a solution by signing into law the Covid-19 hate crime act. He understands that it might face rejection, but he intends to convince his audience (Suciu, 2019). He explains the discrimination case that will increase the mass sensitivity against hate and capture their attention. He explains to them the fears most are facing to gain sympathy from his audience, who generally could join him in condemning the evil acts against the discriminate Asian American.

To show his audience that the discriminated people are against the virus spread, he explains to them that they are putting efforts to fight the spread by getting vaccinated by the discriminators are not allowing them to play their roles. Further, the President includes the weak in the society, such as the old and students who are discriminated against even in school (The White House, 2021). He then persuaded them by asking them to avoid discriminating against them as the hate could have severe consequences. Finally, through a long speech explanation, he aims at passing his message that they should all stand against discrimination.


Since the President’s act is against human discrimination his speech is entirely on correctness. He explains the importance of unity thus chooses to avoid offensive words. Despite using the phrases such as Asian American that are considered discriminatory, they remain relevant in this context because he had to be specific for the audience to understand. He, however, avoids addressing the Chinese directly since the virus originated from there. It could have escalated division since the two nations had had some trade wars necessitating the President to choose his words carefully. Additionally, he does not directly tell the whites or those of American decency that they are discriminators. Lastly, when the President notices that he has wrongly identified his senator, he guesses that it might offend him, apologizing jokingly.


The President ensured that his message was well delivered with minimal misunderstanding through language. He uses direct phrases such as Asian Americans to specifically identify the people behind his choices. He further uses a better language and scenario description, such as the mass shooting, to show the already existing effects of hate. To predict xenophobia if the hate was not stopped or regulated, the shorter case of shooting can be related to the mass killing experienced in xenophobia.

The President delivers a long speech explaining the cases of discrimination in the country and gives examples of discriminatory incidences. The speech remains effective by avoiding to use specific terms such as the whites who are depicted as the big discriminators and specifically naming the Chinese as the most hated during that period. He, however, include the people of colour who mostly refer to blacks. The entire speech describes discrimination and hates against Asians, which prompts the President to sign the Covid-19 hate crime act.


By using the inferences and implicates, there are possibilities that some people might not understand and interpret the Presidents speech as he intends. For example, the President’sPresident’s explanation on hate against Asian Americans implies that the most hated people during that period were the Chinese since the virus was first discovered in Wuhan, China. By collectively referring to them as Asian Americans, he avoids conflict, which some people in the audience won’t understand. Further, when he repeatedly pretends to misidentify Senator Hirono as maize, not all people will consider his apology despite correctly identifying his one correct name. In his speech, the President is incoherent as he uses phrases that cannot be related to the context. He does not try to correct himself but continues without explaining his intention in clear words. The President is also recorded stammering and delivering while incoherently delivering part of the speech.

Comparison of the two more discourses

Discourse varies greatly depending on various factors such as context, purpose and participant. When we consider the statement released by the white house, the fact sheet: the United States and European Commission announced trans-Atlantic data privacy network and the earlier discourse, there is a big variance in argument and language. The same aspect is depicted in Forbes report on Trump called BLM protesters’ protesters’ Thugs” but Capitol storming ”Very Special”.

The second discourse, a press statement released from the Whitehouse is different in forms of argument and language used in the earlier presidential discourse. This report’s context is based on the agreement between the USA and the EU on data privacy after the two parties agreed on the pact (The White House, 2022). This deal was agreed upon because of the concerns raised by the Court of Justice of the European Union, with the 2020 concerns unaddressed in the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield framework. This context dictates the purpose of the statement and the translations of each word. It has also affected the flow of ideas despite being reported by the same media, unlike the earlier discourse by the President, which started by acknowledgment of those present.

The second discourse seems to be cohesive and coherent. Unlike the speech by President Biden, where he seemed to stammer, this discourse is fluent with a possibility of being fact-checked and proofread before publishing. The discourse is purposed to inform the public information of writing; hence any misunderstanding cannot be cleared by other linguistic cues. The people authorized to publish this excerpt have been trained for this job, unlike President Biden, who has not trained for media and mass communication.

The participant in this discourse is not stated directly hence relying on the readers to identify them. Concerning the context, the primary participants are the writers and reporters in the Whitehouse. Other linguistic cues determine the secondary participants. From the excerpt, other participants include the EU and USA Data Privacy framework representative, the reader, people in the USA and EU, legal representative, and Data security teams across the world.

Unlike the two discourses from the same sources, the third discourse is derived from the Forbes reports on how former president Trump showed open discrimination. The context of this excerpt is based on the years when the USA was heavily affected by the Covid-19 pandemic (Beer, 2021). During that time, the Police killed one black American in the case, which was concluded that it was due to racial discrimination. The president’s stand led to outrage across the country, with the then-sitting president Trump termed the protest as a thug move aimed at jeopardizing his presidential term and bid. Subsequently, another riot was against the Black lives matter movement, and the president supported them, hence openly showing discrimination.

Since a media expert did this report, it is cohesive and coherent. It explains every event as it happened and the flow of facts as to why they considered the president’s remark was biased. The president is quoted directly with supporting remarks like ‘we love you’ remarks showing direct support to those who stormed Capitol Hill. Further, the excerpt depicts some inferences such as ‘we’ to point at the president.

The excerpt participants are directly stated, while others can be known through linguistic cues concerning the content and context. The participants in this discourse are the then-sitting president Trump, Capitol Hill rioters, black lives movement protestors, those in Capitol Hill and George Floyd. Other unstated participants include the readers and the audience who was watching the president deliver his speech live on TV.

How discourse samples are shaped by ideologies of power, control, injustice, inequality, social change, and emancipation

Power is considered the ability of one to influence the behaviour of others. Thus, those in power can control injustice, inequality, social change, and emancipation. This ability can be depicted in the discourses discussed above, which involves powerful entities from President Biden, Whitehouse, Trump, and Capitol Hill (The White House, 2021). Through their social positions, they can control how people act or move. An example is how President Biden decided to sign an act that will control people’s social behaviours, end injustice against Asian Americans, change how people will interact without showing hate against these of different origins and emancipation the Asian Americans who verge being hated affecting their movement socializing.

The second discourse shows how the Whitehouse controls what world data privacies and how they can control them. President Trump, on the contrary, shows how he can use his power to ensure he control the disciplinary forces and discriminate against the blacks. Through his statements, he encourages injustice by considering the BLM as thugs while supporting inequality by considering the Capital Hill rioters as heroes. The outcomes of the presidents’ statements affect social relationships, affecting how people will socialize and limit others’ freedom.

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In the past two years, the USA has experienced a great difference in leadership, especially public speaking. With the awareness of power and discourse, each leader has used it differently to ensure their message is passed. The first case involves the then-sitting president of the USA, President Trump. During the riots and protests during the racial discrimination outrage, the president chose a side and sided with the rioters. Despite being aware of his influence due to his power, he praised the Capitol Hill rioters who compromised the BLM movement. Despite the BLM showing concerns against injustice, inequality, social changes and compromised freedom, the president chose those who opposed the movement, thus affecting how the power control and socialization. When we consider the context, the president is considered irrational, abused his power and failed to unite the nation through his discriminatory approach.

On the other hand, the Whitehouse is in dire support of the unit. In both discourses, they are signing acts and pacts to ensure the state participants enjoy certain freedom they were deprived of earlier. Through its power, it signs acts against discrimination and injustice, which will affect social freedom by taking legal actions against hate hence promoting unity through power and control. Additionally, signing the data privacy deal will ensure that data is transparently transferred with its integrity maintained. These acts will promote the social activities between the two nations and strengthen ties. The approach will also affect how people socialize on the online platform without the fear of data breaches. Lastly, it fosters justice as the Court of the European Union had already complained against the previous act. Therefore, there will be justice in data privacy-related cases by granting them their wish.


Beer, T. (2021). Trump Called BLM Protesters ‘Thugs’ But Capitol-Storming Supporters ‘Very Special’. Forbes. Web.

Suciu, L. (2019). Introductory chapter: Discourse and discourse analysis. A retrospective approach. Advances in Discourse Analysis. Web.

The White House. (2021). Remarks by president Biden at signing of the COVID-19 hate Crimes Act. Web.

The White House. (2022). FACT SHEET: United States and European Commission announce Trans-Atlantic data privacy framework. Web.

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DemoEssays. 2023. "The President Biden's Political Discourse Analysis." February 27, 2023.

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DemoEssays. "The President Biden's Political Discourse Analysis." February 27, 2023.