President Joe Biden let an enormous opportunity slip by — not to be a transformative president — but a consequential one instead. The truth is that America is at an inflection point and Joe Biden is missing his moment.
For starters, Mr. Biden should have acted on his own inaugural address. In the first week of his presidency, he could have invited Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to the White House for a meeting to set the tone for how he was planning to govern with the legislative branch so evenly split.
Mr. Biden could have sat the Republican leaders down in the Oval Office and said what every American knows — we’re a divided country. He could have acknowledged political reality: He won the electoral college by merely tens of thousands of votes out of a record 158 million cast; the Senate is deadlocked at 50-50; and Democrats barely have a governing majority in the House. He could have said in these uncertain times, it’s important that the American people see Democrats and Republicans united, working together.
Mr. Biden could have said to Messrs. McConnell and McCarthy that he had intended to “go big” in the FDR tradition, but it’s simply not the time for massive spending bills and an expansion of government. He could have said that inflation would be a disaster to our economic recovery. He could have said he’s going to listen to the American people and seek consensus and moderation — which means not reversing President Trump’s successful policies.
The president could have told the Republicans that now is not the time to listen to the socialists in Congress like Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, because historically socialism has failed wherever it’s been attempted.
Mr. Biden could have said that he wants to see America remain energy independent and that he’s going to fight for energy sector jobs of all kinds — not just ones that suit the radical Green New Deal agenda. He could have said that stopping the Keystone Pipeline is foolhardy and dangerous.
Mr. Biden could have said he’s not going to stop wall construction and open the border because the current policies are working. He could have said he’s not raising taxes, because in the wake of the pandemic job creators need certainty so they can start investing and hiring again.
Mr. Biden could have said we’re going to take off the masks and get back to school because it’s not right to politicize a crisis that’s killed over 580,000 Americans. He could have told Republican Leaders McConnell and McCarthy that we’re going to defeat COVID-19, open up our economy, and get back to normal — together.
Mr. Biden could have said no to critical race theory because we can’t have our children growing up hating their country instead of understanding why it’s exceptional. He could have said that he’s never supported packing the Supreme Court or killing the filibuster and he’s not going to start now. The president could have said that as a former six-term U.S. senator, he understands the critical importance of checks and balances in our constitutional republic.
But it never happened. It’s clear that President Biden isn’t strong enough to stand up to his radical base or the left-wing ideologues in the West Wing who advise him. So, Republican leaders have no choice but to dig in and fight against every radical socialist policy that comes out of the Biden White House. For nearly four months, Mr. Biden has chosen the politics of fear, division, partisanship and Trump Derangement Syndrome. He’s given Messrs. McConnell and McCarthy no choice.
Mr. Biden’s meeting this week with Mr. McConnell, Mr. McCarthy, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer about a potential infrastructure compromise had all the authenticity of a three dollar bill. It was obviously just another staged White House photo-op.
On every occasion when Mr. Biden had the opportunity to pivot back to reason, he’s doubled down in favor of the hard left. Just look at his response to last week’s horrible jobs report. Mr. Biden’s answer was to just spend trillions more. Instead of pumping the breaks and taking stock, Mr. Biden is going to force us down the path of unsustainable debt, inflation, and Jimmy Carter-like malaise.
Mr. Biden’s decision to embrace socialism will go down as one of the worst calls in the history of the presidency. He’s going to be remembered as a weak president well past his prime who no longer had the wherewithal to see the bill of goods his partisan advisors and liberal special interests were selling him.
Unless he changes course, the Biden presidency will essentially end on Nov. 8, 2022 when Democrats get steamrolled in the midterm elections. Unified Republicans, independents and moderate Democrats must fully reject Mr. Biden’s charge into the socialist abyss.
• David N. Bossie is president of Citizens United and he served as deputy campaign manager for Donald J. Trump for President.