April 26, 2023

Biden’s Running

President Joe Biden launched his re-election bid on Tuesday with a promise to protect American liberties from ‘extremists’ linked to former President Donald Trump, who he beat in 2020 and might face again in 2024.” Reuters

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From the Left

The left generally supports Biden, and is optimistic about his chances.

Biden “has some substantial achievements to highlight. Under his leadership, the U.S. economy rebounded more quickly from the coronavirus pandemic than many of its competitors, and the unemployment rate is just 3.5 per cent. In the past year, Congress has enacted historic investments in green energy, electric vehicles, and semiconductor-chip manufacturing… These initiatives are already paying off in announcements to build new factories and create new jobs, many of them in purple and red states…

“The biggest danger to Biden’s reëlection prospects is the state of the economy in the short term, and the possibility of a recession between now and November, 2024, as the Federal Reserve maintains a tight monetary policy to bring down inflation… Last July, Biden’s rating hit a low of 37.5 per cent… and has rebounded slowly since then, as the inflation rate has somewhat fallen back. As yet, voters don’t seem to be giving Biden much credit for this moderation.”

John Cassidy, New Yorker

“Obviously, age has taken a toll on Biden. His voice is weaker, his diction is not as clear as it once was. Sometimes I hold my breath when he speaks, fearful of a faux pas. But the president showed as recently as February, when he cleverly turned the tables on MAGA Republican hecklers during his State of the Union speech, that he can dish it out and think on his feet

“And Tuesday, just after his reelection video dropped, he delivered an impassioned speech to labor union leaders at the North America’s Building Trades Unions conference, underlining his administration’s accomplishments and commitment to working-class America. ‘Under my predecessor, Infrastructure Week was a punchline,’ he said. ‘On my watch, we’re making Infrastructure Decade a headline.’…

“If Biden’s advanced age and Hunter [Biden]’s poor judgment are all the MAGA Republicans have got, I’m putting my money on a second Biden term.”

Robin Abcarian, Los Angeles Times

“Joe Biden would be my candidate, no matter what his age, as long [as] he was physically and mentally able… [But] Given the stakes, Biden needs to make the case to his party — and, more important, to independents and moderate Republicans — why Harris is the best choice to succeed him, should he not be able to complete his term. He cannot ignore this issue, because that question will be on the minds of many voters come election time…

“At the same time, Harris has to make the case for herself, ideally by showing more forcefully what she can do. One thing Biden might consider is putting Harris in charge of ensuring that America’s transition to the age of artificial intelligence works to strengthen communities and the middle class. It is a big theme that could take her all over the country… While you may think the 2024 election is very likely going to be a rerun of 2020, that is not the case for the Democrats. This time, Biden’s running mate will really matter.”

Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times

From the Right

The right criticizes Biden, arguing that he has mismanaged the country.

The right criticizes Biden, arguing that he has mismanaged the country.

Real wages have gone down, not up. Income levels are down and people have drained their savings trying to keep up with rising prices. All of that was directly driven by inflation which has remained at or above 5% for almost all of the Biden presidency. And that inflation was a direct result of the trillions of dollars in imaginary money that was pumped into the system…

“We are now up to more than 6.3 million illegal immigrants that have invaded the country since January 2021. Many were ‘encountered’ and released into America’s interior but there have also been more than 1.2 million ‘gotaways.’ (As they are called.) One record for illegal migration after another has been broken. And we somehow managed to lose track of at least 85,000 children…

“A record number of homicides were recorded in nine large cities last year. Property crime is up significantly almost everywhere… And if all of that isn’t enough for you, let’s talk about the foreign policy disaster that has unfolded in barely two years. Biden kicked it off with his disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan, abandoning thousands of people, turning the country over to the Taliban and making it increasingly more of a hotspot for ISIS.”

Jazz Shaw, Hot Air

“According to NBC News polling out this week, his disapproval rating is at 54 percent (just two points shy of his all-time high) while a whopping 70 percent of Americans say they don’t want him to run again. With those numbers, his campaign should be politically dead-on-arrival. But here’s the problem for Republicans: Sixty percent of voters also don’t want Donald Trump to run again. Americans are sending a clear message to both parties: They want new candidates to choose from in 2024…

“Among voters who disapprove of both Trump and Biden, Biden leads Trump by a massive 39 points… Trump is effectively Biden’s ‘get out of jail free’ card — the former president is the one Republican candidate who can save Biden from the political consequences of all the serial disasters he’s unleashed on the country during this term: from the worst inflation in 40 years, to the worst decline in real wages in four decades, the highest gas prices ever recorded in the United States, the biggest annual rise in food prices since 1979, the worst labor shortages in American history and the worst crime wave since the 1990s.”

Marc A. Thiessen, Washington Post

Others argue, “Where I think the Biden team is potentially making a mistake is assuming that Trump will be the easier candidate to beat. It’s what the polls say. And it feels right to some extent. But… Trump on the ballot is different. He lost in 2020 but he came a hell of a lot closer than the polls said he would. And there’s a wild-card aspect to running against a Trump campaign that isn’t true against literally any other candidate we’ve seen… Ron DeSantis may be more attractive to some independent voters, which is what is showing up in the polls right now, but he’s not Donald Trump.”

Sarah Isgur, The Dispatch

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