Here are the 26 most important centrists Joe Biden will need to advance his agenda when he starts governing a divided post-Trump America

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  • President-elect Joe Biden will probably govern with a divided Congress, and will need to bring different factions together to get things done.
  • During the presidential campaign, multiple Republicans such as former Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake and Cindy McCain broke with their party to support Biden.
  • Biden will need to win over the support of centrist Republicans in Congress to enact policies and confirm judges and Cabinet members.
  • “What’s clear is that the centrists in the House and Senate – the members of both parties who are willing to put extreme partisanship aside and work together – will have a major voice in the policy debates to come,” said Cori Kramer, executive director of Center Forward. 
  • Know anyone else who should be on this list? Let reporters Kimberly Leonard and Dave Levinthal know at and
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President-elect Joe Biden could move into the White House in January without Democrats having full control of the government. It’s a split dynamic that would make his job difficult.

Should Republicans retain control of the Senate after January’s Georgia runoff, the new president would need several moderates in and out of Congress willing to reach across the aisle.

Either way, Biden’s promises to govern as a uniter capable of working with Republicans will be challenged by the certain slim majority in the Senate. 

The support of Republican governors will be especially crucial, as the new president prepares to roll out his plan for fighting the coronavirus pandemic and reviving the economy.

He’ll also have to assuage centrist Democrats in the House and Senate that his party won’t go too far to the left, including on a coronavirus relief bill, climate change, healthcare, and immigration. Outside groups that influence public opinion and help to elect Democrats will need to get onboard with Biden’s positions or would otherwise mobilize opposition. 

Here’s the list of the top 26 most influential centrists Biden will lean on to enact his agenda. It will be updated periodically.