Biden Presidency: Life Support or Dead?
Or somewhere in between -- or somewhere else?
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Better late than….
Thank goodness the Dallas hostage situation resolved without massive tragedy.
THE MAN WHO IS PRESIDENT
If you take in the Dominant Media today, you are given two choices:
1. Joe Biden’s presidency is on life support.
2. Joe Biden’s presidency is effectively over.
A pre-brunch email survey of the Gang of 500 shows 60% believe it is on “life support,” while 40% believe it is done and dusted.
Interestingly, 75% of Democrats believe the thing is over.
The full poll, including the incredible crosstabs, will be available during our weekly meeting at Lauriol Plaza at 11am today.
In honor of the Martin Luther King holiday weekend, all are welcome today.
Just tell the host or hostess you are there for “The Gang of 500 Brunch,” and you will be escorted to our table.
Cost for non-members: $500. (You would not believe how expensive the 2022 member fleeces are! #BidenInflation)
So, the coverage….
Rupert Murdoch Inc says: DEAD!
According to the election calendar, Joe Biden has three years remaining in his term. According to political reality, his presidency is over, kaput, finished.
Jon Alter, writing in the Washington Post with parochial cleverness, says Biden would be lucky to be as successful as Jimmy Carter.
Dan Balz says, in effect, “life support but the patient could die”:
Nearing the first anniversary of his swearing-in, President Biden has suffered through arguably the worst week of his presidency. Whether he has a strategy for a course correction is the question on the minds of nervous Democrats looking ahead to the November elections.
Embedded in this Balz paragraph is peril, darkness, humor, and more irony:
Looking to November, absent a turnaround, the more the elections become a pure referendum on the president, the more his party will suffer. Biden’s opportunity could be to try to shift the focus, to prompt swing suburban voters to ask themselves whether a Republican Congress would return the country to the chaos of the Trump years, with House GOP leaders promising retribution if they take control and the party generally lacking a clear governing agenda.
A Washington Post companion news story is pretty grim:
If he entered office a year ago with promises of a forceful new era of government action, the past week displayed, like few of the 50 weeks that preceded it, the struggles he is facing on the cusp of his second year in office….
Biden has always considered himself an optimist, hoping for positive outcomes and casting aside pessimistic prognosticators. But the past week crystallized that, at least in the current political, economic and foreign policy environment, Biden is struggling to shape events and instead is finding himself shaped by them.
Ditto the Wall Street Journal version, with a quote from the man who is now doing interviews with everyone, it seems, heralding doom:
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) [said] in an interview. “I’ll tell you right now I fear very much that a lot of Democrats are becoming demoralized.”
MoDo is down down down, on the man more than the moment:
But the real problem is the president himself, who can’t shake the cobwebs of the Judiciary Committee that held its biggest hearings in the same ornate caucus room where he met with Democrats on Thursday.
He is too in the weeds on process. He’s so lost in the snows of yesteryear that he is continuing his Amtrak Joe nearly-every-weekend commute to Delaware, albeit with better wheels, trading in the train for Marine One.
We want the president to rise above it and be an inspirational figure. We don’t want the incremental updates of his negotiations with Joe Manchin.
We want to see Covid under control. We want to see the sacred right to vote protected. We want the grocery shelves stocked with affordable milk and meat. We want a president who tells us that we will get through this and we will be stronger for it.
Joe Biden better Build Better or he won’t be Back. If he doesn’t turn it around, he has cleared the way to a Republican rout in this fall’s midterms. And in 2024, who knows how bad it can get?
Ross Douthat, in an essential read, uses the Biden “I” word, which is not “impeachment”:
[P]ower is what Biden conspicuously lacks right now. Which makes what we’ve just watched from him feel like the worst possible combination for a president — an anger that only reveals weakness, an escalation that exposes only impotence beneath.
For Team Biden’s communications staff, the goal surely must be to turn the page.
They must be looking for the moment and methods to do that.
But Dan Balz quotes David Axelrod with the cutting reality that makes said page turn seem far, far off — if possible at all.
Caveat: Axelrod, like most members of the Obama high command, has never been a big fan of the political gifts of Joseph R. Biden:
On both the economy and the pandemic, Biden must hope that there will be a gradual improvement that the voters begin to feel by early this summer. For months, this has been the mantra of administration officials: Things have to improve and naturally will. Yet nothing the administration can say will persuade people who are feeling bad, whether about the pandemic or the economy, that they shouldn’t feel bad. As David Axelrod, the Democratic strategist, said, “You can’t jawbone people into feeling better.”
So: If Joe Biden wants to make midterm voters feel better, he is going to have to make them feel better.
THE MAN WHO WAS PRESIDENT AND MIGHT BE AGAIN
Here is what Rupert Inc thought of the Saturday night live Trump rally in Arizona:
Former President Donald Trump held his first political rally of the new year in Arizona on Friday, continuing to insist that he had won the 2020 election without evidence….
“Last year we had a rigged election and the proof is all over the place,” he continued. “We have a lot of proof and they know it’s proof. They always talk about the Big Lie — they’re the Big Lie.”
“The Big Lie is a lot of bull****, that’s what it is,” he said to more cheers.
Here is what Blue America thinks:
Like in 2016.
THE COVID C BLOCK
THE SPORTS AND KICKER D BLOCK
Where is The Presumption of Grace, Mr. Brennan?