Wow, talk about the understatement of the year. I can’t tell you how wonderful it was to hear from the 44th President of the United States today. A formal endorsement of his Vice-President, Joe Biden, came today. It was only a matter of time, of course. Why he decided to wait until the primary season ended, with Bernie Sanders finally dropping out and also endorsing Biden, is anyone’s best guess.
But I get a sense that Barack Obama doesn’t just do things by chance. I’m sure he pondered whether to weigh in earlier on who he wanted to see as the candidate to run against Donald Trump. Perhaps he didn’t want it to be Biden. Or, maybe he merely wanted to let the people decide for themselves, and not get in the way of the process.
Frankly, I don’t care what his reasons were. Because his announcement today was a breath of fresh air, just as it was to see Senator Sanders give his full-throated support to Biden yesterday. I feel so much better. And I needed to feel better about something–anything for that matter.
Because the news of late is about as bad as I can remember in my lifetime. It’s depressing to see the carnage left in the wake of Trump’s complete and utter failure to deal with this crisis. The bodies continue to pile up all over the country, and how we move forward economically is uncertain and wrought with challenges we haven’t seen in generations.
But seeing my president speak earlier today gave me a pep in my step. That’s right, my president. I said it. I haven’t recognized the current occupant of the White House in that manner because I do not see him that way. I’ve never felt he was legitimate from the beginning, and his actions every day over the past 3.5 years has only hardened my position.
And in those disastrous 3.5 years, I’ve often wanted my president to speak up a little more often. He’s been hesitant to do so and I understand why that is. It’s sort of an unwritten rule among presidents to not criticize their successor. I believe that rests with the fact that they know how hard a job it is in the first place. They know the stress and responsibility that comes with the territory, so they cut the new guy some slack.
George W. Bush was a terrible president. In fact, he was the worst, in my view, until the current person unseated him for that crown. But Bush, in his time out of office, has conducted himself in an honorable way. I commend him for that. At times, Obama was critical of him, especially during his first term. So I have to give Bush some credit for holding his fire. Rarely, if ever, did he criticize Obama for anything.
Let’s face it, though, Trump is a different animal altogether. He’s not normal. He never was normal. And he will never be normal. But only on a few occasions has Obama decided to voice his opinion. Charlottesville, and Trump’s disgraceful “good people on both sides” comment was one of those times we heard from him. There’s been a few other occasions too, especially when Trump has gone too far on environmental deregulation.
By and large, though, he’s been relatively muted since Trump’s election. But not today, folks. With the Biden endorsement came a blistering attack on not only Trump, but the Republican Party as a whole:
“What we know now is that the Republicans occupying The White House and the United States Senate, are not interested in progress. They’re interested in power.”
“They’ve given polluters unlimited power to poison our air and water. They’ve denied the science of climate change, just as they’ve denied the science of this pandemic.”
“Repeatedly, they’ve disregarded our basic principles, rule of law, voting rights, and transparency.”
“The other side has a propaganda network with little regard for the truth, and a massive war chest.”
“This crisis has reminded us that government matters. This crisis has reminded us that good government matters. That facts, and science matter.”
“We need Americans of all stripes to unite against a politics that too often is characterized by corruption, carelessness, self-dealing, disinformation, ignorance, and just plain meanness.”
And do you know what’s even better about all of those quotes? He never mentioned Trump’s name. Not once. He didn’t have to, did he?
If any of you are feeling hopeless and helpless, I urge you to take a listen to my president. Maybe Joe Biden doesn’t inspire you. Maybe he seems as if he’s lost a step and shows his age a little more often than you’d like. But Joe Biden is a good man. He’s a decent man with more integrity and decency than the current president could ever dream of.
And you know who else fits that description? Yes, my president. And he just so happens to be the guy who worked with Joe Biden for eight years. Not a hint of a scandal, nor any indictments in their administration. Biden will continue that same standard if he’s elected. The Democratic bench in America is large and impressive. He will have quite the pool to choose from when he starts to form a cabinet.
And not only that, but it appears Biden is leaning towards a bold and progressive platform, no doubt inspired by Bernie’s influence and the support he received from millions of young people.
Isn’t that something to look forward to? Look, removing the vile and vindictive current occupant of the office won’t be easy. Like my president said in his endorsement, he’s got a massive war chest and a propaganda network all to himself.
But we can do it, and we must do it. Thank you Mr. President for the pep talk today. I needed it–hell, America needed it. Thanks for reminding us what a real president looks like, acts like, and talks like. With you fired up and ready to go, I feel so much better. Much better.