Unity, huh? I have to admit; I thought President Biden might get at least a few weeks of relative respect from the media as well as Republican politicians. Boy, was I wrong.
I also was hoping the far-left might cut the new president some slack too. You know, maybe see what’s actually in the proposed $1.9 trillion Covid relief bill before criticizing it profusely? Wrong, again.
I wrote several months ago in this space that I thought Biden was the best man to try and unify the country. I still feel that way. But I also acknowledged that I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. Frankly, I expected the Republicans to come at him with fierce resistance to everything he tries to do. And, true to form, a myriad of catcalls and complaints already are infecting the airwaves and internet. Here are just a few:
“How are all these Executive Orders unifying the country?” ” Reversing Trump’s directives is not the way to lower the temperature.” “How dare he try to propose progressive solutions to fix all of our problems?” “Biden needs to come down hard on Putin’s crackdown of protestors.” “Firing Trump appointees is too partisan and sends the wrong message.”
I’ve got a simple reminder to the radical right as to why it’s perfectly normal for President Biden to try and enact his proposals and fulfill promises from the campaign: He won – Trump lost. If it sounds harsh, too bad. Because in every previous incoming administration, that’s the way it’s done. You win the election; you come in and try to pass your agenda, especially if the previous administration was from the party on the other side. We may not like it, but that’s the reality of politics.
And to be clear, what Republicans always fail to mention is the fact that their president, who lost by seven million votes, will go down as the worst and most divisive president we’ve ever seen. A president, mind you, that these very same politicians rarely criticized or held to account for his corruption and incompetence. So, spare us the self-righteous indignation, please. Republicans have no credibility, nor do they have any right to lecture the incoming president on what it takes to unify.
Until the roughly 150 or so Representatives and Senators produce a written mea culpa to the American people for helping to incite the January 6 insurrection, they’ve got no standing whatsoever. Congress should expel many of them; others need to be censured at the very least.
For their part, the media fuel the flames of disunity by ginning up the ridiculous notion that Biden is nothing but a fake populist Democrat because pictures showed him wearing a Rolex watch. Oh, and the new president’s nerve to have a Peloton Bike, a high-end fitness machine. How dare he? What kind of message does that send to hard-working Americans?
You’ve got to be kidding me. I’m not even going to dignify such a line of bullshit. I will point you to the following article from the always spot-on journalist, Eric Boehlert, for his take on this nonsense in today’s piece in PressRun. Eric knows and reports on media hypocrisy better than anyone in the business, and his viewpoint is well worth checking out.
But while we know what to expect from radical right Republicans, as well as fake media outrage concerning Democrats who might make a few bucks when out of office, I’m going to pinpoint my most furious frustration to those on the far-left.
When I refer to the far-left, I’m mostly referring to those who have a militant and undying devotion to Bernie Sanders, and, to a lesser extent, Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. In many cases, these are hardcore socialists who seem to revel in their chance to criticize Democrats more than they do Republicans, or even more telling, Donald Trump.
In effect, this effort is along the same lines as the ‘both sides do it’ mantra. It’s the same refrain you hear that Democrats and Republicans are the same, but the Democrats are worse because they’re not far left enough.
And within 24 hours of Biden’s inauguration, many of these folks were already calling Biden a liar and corporatist for going back on his claim that he was for $ 2,000 checks for the American people. If you remember, the $900 billion relief bill passed in December included $600 payments for those who qualified.
Over the next several weeks, what transpired was a debate on whether Biden’s bill would include an additional $2,000 check, or whether it would be $1,400, which would fulfill the original $2,000 total. So, folks, we’re talking about a difference of $600, and many on the far-left are blaming Biden for reneging on his promise.
To me, it was merely a matter of semantics. I always figured Congress meant the new bill would make up the difference from the one passed in December. According to the socialist crowd, Biden lied. I had it out with a couple of these individuals on Twitter, and here are just a few examples:
The thing is, I’m sympathetic to many on the far-left. I think that Medicare-for-all and free or reduced college tuition are worthy goals for us to achieve. I’m also well aware of the human suffering going on and how people desperately need financial help. However, I’m also aware that President Biden has narrow majorities in the House and even less in the Senate. I know our socialist friends want Biden to do an Executive Order or enact these two enormous policy proposals through reconciliation. They also want recurring $2,000 payments for the duration of the pandemic.
I’m sorry, it’s not going to happen. You’ve got to be pragmatic when it comes to the political reality of Washington, D.C. My advice to the two people in my Twitter example was to please give the new president a chance to succeed. Let’s let him do what he has to do to get things done. We need to give him some space and time to do that. Already calling him a liar over a few hundred bucks is not helpful. I could not convince them.
So, while I’m still hopeful our new president can unify the American people, I’m somewhat less optimistic than I was a few weeks ago. The trajectory is already heading downward, unfortunately. The rhetoric is already toxic, the radical right-wing media is spewing even more lies, and the far-left is unhappy.
Welcome to the new Washington, D.C., Mr. President. Sigh.