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Matthew Continetti

Senior Fellow, American Enterprise Institute

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‘Bidenomics’ falls short in addressing America’s economic woes

Jul 27, 2023

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According to a CNBC survey, President Biden’s economic approval rating stands at 37%, which marks a 3% improvement from the prior survey in April. Though a handful of Biden’s policies may have benefitted some working-class Americans, many of the Democrat voters he needs to win in 2024 cite inflation and higher interest rates as major concerns.

Straight Arrow News contributor Matthew Continetti understands their sentiment and explains why he believes “Bidenomics” has been detrimental to the country.

President Biden’s latest pitch for “Bidenomics” is an admission of weakness. He and his team can read the polls. They can see that voters’ dismal assessment of the economy is dragging him down. His solution is to talk up job numbers and investment figures, boast about factory construction, note that inflation is on a downward slope, highlight his ties to organized labor, remind the electorate that he’s doing his best to eliminate annoying consumer fees.

The strategy is familiar. It uses rhetoric as a substitute for performance. If voters disliked what you were selling, don’t change the product, market it differently. Call it “Bidenomics.”

Neither the clever slogan nor the most eloquent spokesman can disguise the underlying reality. Not only has Biden presided over a decline in real average hourly earnings, his policies are responsible for the loss of purchasing power. The worst inflation in 40 years did not come out of nowhere. It was goosed by Biden’s American Rescue Plan Act. That bill, passed early in 2021, flooded a recovering economy with $2 trillion in fiscal stimulus on top of the trillions spent the previous year to sustain America during the pandemic. The spending splurge, in combination with restrictive energy and trade policies, generated the inflation that has dogged Biden’s presidency.

President Biden’s latest pitch for Biden omics is an admission of weakness. He and his team can read the polls, they can see that voters dismal assessment of the economy is dragging him down. His solution is to talk up job numbers and investment figures boast about factory construction. Note that inflation is on a downward slope, highlight his ties to organized labor remind the electorate that he’s doing his best to eliminate annoying consumer fees. The strategy is familiar. It uses rhetoric as a substitute for performance. If voters disliked what you were selling, don’t change the product marketed differently. Call it Biden omics. Neither the clever slogan or the most eloquent spokesman can disguise the underlying reality. Not only has Biden presided over a decline in real average hourly earnings, his policies are responsible for the loss of purchasing power. The worst inflation in 40 years did not come out of nowhere. It was goosed by Biden’s American rescue plan act. That bill passed early in 2021, flooded a recovering economy with $2 trillion in fiscal stimulus on top of the trillions spent the previous year to sustain America during the pandemic. The spending splurge in combination with restrictive energy and trade policies generated the inflation that is dogged Biden’s presidency. Say the economy avoids recession and financial implosion inflation subsides, real wages recovering grow. Would Biden be a sure bet for reelection? He’d be helped, of course. But this economy is not the President’s sole liability. The public doesn’t just reject by genomics. It also rejects by genomics his namesake. Biden’s fitness for Office is already in doubt. Americans have grave concerns over the 80 year old president’s physical and mental capacity, and nothing in Biden’s domestic program will make the president any younger. The worries over Biden’s infirmity spill over into views of his vice president Kamala Harris, who would inherit the office of president if something happens to Biden is the most unpopular vice president in the history of the NPC poll. Biden omics may make democratic partisans feel better about the economy. Nothing can make them feel good about Harris. Meanwhile, IRS whistleblowers have revealed the true meaning of biodynamics. The term well describes the buck raking schemes that some members of the Biden family, including the president’s son Hunter, have used to get rich while avoiding federal taxes. Biden’s entanglement in the scandal is sure to grow in the coming year, as the House of Representatives and intrepid reporters seek to uncover or restate the details of the Biden family operation. What they find won’t make the president more popular. No longer is Biden the genial grandpa, who issues reassuring platitudes from his Delaware basement. He’s rather cranky and out of it octogenarian with the spotty record, and in a strange relationship to the truth. The nation is on autopilot, gliding toward a general election that voters do not want, determined by sure to be narrow outcomes and three or four states, Arizona, Georgia, Wisconsin and Nevada. Biden’s future depends not on his agenda, nor on his charisma, but on the anti Maga coalition that cost Republicans in 2017 2018 2020 and 2022. Biden has counted on this coalition before we’ll see if it saves him again.

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