In his first campaign-style event, President Biden on Thursday made the argument to vote for Democrats by slamming the Republican platform as “semi-fascism.”
Mr. Biden’s remarks came at a Democratic National Committee fundraiser in Rockville, Maryland, a left-leaning municipality just north of Washington.
The event, which took place at a local high school, kicked off the aggressive midterm campaign season, which is a little more than two months away.
In sharp remarks, he also railed against Republican ideas, party lawmakers and former President Donald Trump, who is expected to run for election in 2024.
He depicted Republicans as extremists, calling them “the ultra-MAGA party,” referencing Mr. Trump’s campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again.”
“What we’re seeing now, is either the beginning or the death knell of an extreme MAGA philosophy. It’s not just Trump, it’s the entire philosophy that underpins the — I’m going to say something, it’s like semi-fascism.” Mr. Biden said.
“This is not your father’s Republican Party. This is a different deal,” he continued.
In a statement, a Republican National Committee spokesperson fired back, criticizing Mr. Biden’s words as “despicable” and out of touch.
“Despicable. Biden forced Americans out of their jobs, transferred money from working families to Harvard lawyers, and sent our country into a recession while families can’t afford gas and groceries. Democrats don’t care about suffering Americans — they never did,” spokesperson Nathan Brand said.
Democrats were once fearing a political shellacking, but their hopes have since rebounded following a series of legislative victories and actions by Mr. Biden that have rallied his base.
During his remarks, Mr. Biden seized on that momentum, ticking off his recent policy wins, which include the $740 billion climate, health, and tax bill he signed into law, a separate bill aimed at boosting U.S. computer chip production, and a gun control bill.
“We’re headed in the right direction,” Mr. Biden said, touting his recent accomplishments.
Since the Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade abortion-rights ruling in June, Democrats have seen a huge boost in donations and improved polling. On Tuesday, Democratic House candidate Pat Ryan won in a special election in a New York swing district, which was expected to be an easy GOP victory.
It has also helped that gas prices have declined over the past few weeks, though they remain higher than they were this time last year or at the start of Mr. Biden’s term.