One of the strangest ticks of left-leaning punditry over the last year has been the contention that if Democrats in Congress didn’t join together to pass some sort of climate and social spending bill—the various multi-trillion-dollar reconciliation packages that have gone under the label Build Back Better—then President Joe Biden would have presided over a failed presidency. Biden, a member of the congressional majority, would not have any accomplishments or a legacy without this legislation package. Biden and his Democratic Party would have been doomed without the spending bill.
On the contrary, the evidence suggests that Biden is already presiding over a failed presidency—and passing the spending bill could further cement that failure.
EchelonInsights releases a pollThis puts Biden’s situation in stark relief. More than half of registered voters are dissatisfied with the manner Biden handles the economy and foreign policy. Inflation, which is a top concern of voters, is also a major issue. According to 52 percent, Biden makes inflation worse. The question poll respondents were asked is pretty telling: “Do you think Joe Biden’s policies are making the inflation situation…Worse? Better? “Or not at all?”
This query contains the following keyword: policies. Voters blame Biden policiesCurrent economic turmoil
There is no doubt that there has been some misinformation from some voters regarding exactly how Biden managed the economy. However, this isn’t a reason to fault Biden or congressional Democrats for inciting inflation. The first major legislative act that Biden and Democrats in Congress took this year was to pass a deficit-funded $2 trillion coronavirus relief and economic stimulus bill that was much larger than what most economists were calling for, one that some economists—even some long associated with the Democratic Party, like Larry Summers—said would make inflation worse.
Here we are now, nearly a full year later. It is clear that inflation has increased and is expected to increase in the next year. Combining supply chain issues with economic problems is leading to frustration and pain in America’s daily life. This is manifested in higher prices at supermarkets and gas stations for staples and obvious increases in petrol prices. Inflation has increased so quickly that the price of staples has gone up in a blink. Effectively, wage gains this year for workers were effectively destroyed. They’re earning more—and they’re still worse off.
In other words, Americans have very clear and obvious economic issues. And they wish that Biden was focused on policies specifically aimed at addressing the immediate economic problems they face: Echelon’s poll finds that 72 percent of voters—including, notably, 58 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning voters—want Biden to prioritize inflation and supply chain issues over social spending.
Instead, Biden’s and the Democratic leaders in Congress spent the majority of the year focused on passage of a large spending bill, which will, among others, give the IRS more money. You can spend more to check people’s financial recordsYou can also tax methane emissions by using a method that seems almost certain. Home heating costs should be increased. But it will all be over.Women of Trucking Advisory BoardAs part of an initiative to “promote women in trucking” Trucking is a terrible industry for women, so I am all for a Sylvester Stallone-style remake. The Top But it isn’t a solution that will solve the supply chain crisis.
Biden, in other words, is focused on legislative initiatives that would attempt to remedy non-problems that people aren’t particularly worried about while ignoring the very real problems that already exist—problems that his policies, supported by Democrats in Congress, have helped exacerbate. Biden’s spending proposals could worsen those problems by increasing federal spending to an already inflationary economy and by shifting resources towards Democratic social and climate priorities, rather than pressing matters.
This was always a problem with Biden’s broader economic agenda: It was a grab-bag of expensive, preexisting Democratic hobbyhorses—Unions get more moneyFor health insurance programs that are already overpriced, please see the following: Climate policies with dubious efficacy—instead of a set of tailored and focused responses to the problems Americans are actually facing right now. Instead of focusing his attention on the pressing issues, Biden instead resorted to using the list he brought with him when he entered office, as though he was a representative of a powerful public majority who had supported trillions in social and economic reform.
Just yesterday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D–N.Y.) Just yesterday, Chuck Schumer, the Senate Majority Leader (D-N.Y.), stated that he was hopeful the Senate would approve the spending bill by Christmas. It’s obvious what the Democrats in Congress are focusing on and not what the voters are focusing on. Biden, along with his colleagues in Congress, are pushing for Build Back Better. This is a double-down on their strategy of overlooking voter problems and favoring mostly nonrelevant party priorities.
This was always a recipe for a failed presidency, one incapable of adapting to the moment or addressing genuine voter needs—and so it is no surprise that as Biden has followed that recipe, his presidency has flailed and faltered. His failures will continue as long as Biden sticks to his course.