Could Biden’s Divisive Rhetoric Cost Democrats Congress? - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Could Biden’s Divisive Rhetoric Cost Democrats Congress?
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President Joe Biden delivers his “soul of the nation” primetime speech, Sept. 1, 2022 (MSNBC/YouTube)

In President Joe Biden’s 2007 memoir, Promises to Keep: On Life and Politics, he wrote that the late Sen. Mike Mansfield (D-Mont.) gave him the best advice he ever received: “Joe, never attack another man’s motive, because you don’t know his motive.” Judging from Biden’s increasingly belligerent speeches, he has forgotten Mansfield’s eminently wise counsel. This was rendered abundantly clear during his Thursday speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia. Standing before a backdrop that looked as if it had been designed by Leni Riefenstahl, he attacked the motives of half the electorate.

After declaring, “I’m an American President — not the President of red America or blue America, but of all America,” Biden nonetheless insisted that “MAGA Republicans” don’t quite make the cut. Unlike the late Mansfield, he has evidently discovered a way to divine the inner motives of this particular group of Americans, and he has concluded that they are so extremist that they constitute a threat to this country. Biden warned his audience that we are “in a battle for the soul of this nation” and that the enemy is a GOP largely dominated by these evil MAGA Republicans and their diabolical leader — former President Donald Trump. He said:

MAGA Republicans do not respect the Constitution. They do not believe in the rule of law. They do not recognize the will of the people. They refuse to accept the results of a free election. And they’re working right now, as I speak, in state after state to give power to decide elections in America to partisans and cronies, empowering election deniers to undermine democracy itself. MAGA forces are determined to take this country backwards — backwards to an America where there is no right to choose, no right to privacy, no right to contraception, no right to marry who you love.

The response to this bellicose oration and its creepy optics wasn’t quite what Biden and his White House handlers expected. It was too much even for some CNN talking heads. New Day host Brianna Keilar, for example, noted that the use of the military as a prop for an overtly political speech was inappropriate: “Whatever you think of this speech the military is supposed to be apolitical. Positioning Marines in uniform behind President Biden for a political speech flies in the face of that.” The network’s chief national affairs correspondent, Jeff Zeleny, also expressed reservations. Naturally, both were attacked by the Twitter mob.

According to a report in the Washington Post, however, the refusal of the three major broadcast networks to cover the speech was directly related to its naked partisanship: “People involved in negotiations over Thursday’s address said the networks deemed Biden’s remarks as ‘political’ in nature and therefore decided not to televise it.” It’s obvious that the White House scheduled the speech for prime time in the expectation that ABC, CBS, and NBC would preempt normal programming to cover Biden’s remarks. Inevitably, their decision not to do so was denounced by the Left. At the Columbia Journalism Review, Jon Allsop writes:

Ahead of time, the White House insisted that the speech would not be political, by which it meant that Biden would be addressing the nation in his official capacity as president.…Saving democracy is thus political, inherently so. So is the military. So is just about anything the president says, no matter who is picking up the tab. Arguing about whether last night’s speech was political would have been silly and pedantic at the best of times. At this fraught moment, it’s akin to watching your house catch fire and shouting, “Wait a minute! Is this a house?”

But the house isn’t on fire, and Biden’s speech certainly wasn’t about saving democracy. It was just his latest attempt to avoid the consequences of a disastrous series of domestic and foreign-policy blunders. Biden badly needs to distract voters from out-of-control inflation, the steep decline in real wages, unacceptably high gasoline prices, the spreading crime epidemic, illegal immigration, and border security. So, in order to frighten Americans into voting for his congressional accomplices, he and his handlers have fabricated an existential threat to democracy itself. Biden used the word “threat” nine times in his 24-minute speech. (READ MORE from David Catron: The Democratic Momentum Mirage)

This provoked such a widespread backlash that Biden was forced to “clarify” his remarks the next day when Fox News’ Peter Doocy asked him if he considered “Trump supporters to be a threat to the country.” Biden pretended that Doocy was somehow misrepresenting his speech and said, “I don’t consider any Trump supporter to be a threat to the country.” This assertion simply cannot be reconciled with the following words taken directly from his Thursday speech: “[T]here is no question that the Republican Party today is dominated, driven, and intimidated by Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans, and that is a threat to this country.”

If there is any “threat to the country,” it’s the bilious admixture of incompetence and mendacity that defines the Biden presidency. Sadly, he can’t be voted out until 2024. This leaves the voters with only one way to mitigate the damage: deprive his Democratic enablers of their congressional majorities. Countless polls indicate that Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction, and Biden’s low job-approval numbers on specific issues suggest they blame him. His decision to ignore real issues in a prime-time address while stigmatizing a large swath of the electorate is likely to backfire in November.

David Catron
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David Catron is a recovering health care consultant and frequent contributor to The American Spectator. You can follow him on Twitter at @Catronicus.
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