BIDEN AND HARRIS BOTH WEAK GOING INTO 2024. BYRON YORK

BIDEN AND HARRIS BOTH WEAK GOING INTO 2024.

President Joe Biden’s job approval rating has fallen to 38% in a new poll from the Associated Press and the National Opinion Research Center — close to his lowest rating ever in that poll. Just last month, Biden’s rating was 45%, which was as high as it has been since his rating began a long slide a few months after he took office.
What’s going on? The economy. In the month since Biden’s previous, higher rating, people have become deeply concerned about the safety of the banking system. They have renewed worries about inflation. They are concerned about some difficult-to-understand maladies affecting world economic stability. They are, in short, worried about the economy, and when voters are worried about the economy, they are less inclined to view the president of the United States positively.
You can see it in some of the poll’s measurements. When respondents were asked, “Generally speaking, would you say things in this country are headed in the right direction or the wrong direction?” — the oldest question in the polling book — just 21% said the country is headed in the right direction, versus 78% who said wrong direction. The right direction number fell 7 points from just last month, and the wrong direction number rose 7 points.

The pollsters gave respondents several ways to describe the economy. Would you say it is very good, somewhat good, or leans toward good? Or would you say it is very poor, somewhat poor, or leans toward poor? The number of people who said it is good, or even just leans toward good, was 25%, versus 75% who said it is some version of poor. The good number was down 7 points from last month, and the bad number was up 7 points — a perfect reflection of the right direction/wrong direction measure.
The pollsters then asked respondents to describe their own financial situation the same way — very good, somewhat good, leans toward good, very poor, somewhat poor, or leans toward poor. The number who called their situation some version of good fell 4 points to 53% — the lowest it has been in Biden’s presidency. The number who called their situation some version of poor rose 4 points to 47% — the highest it has been in Biden’s presidency.
Finally, Biden’s rating specifically on his handling of the economy fell to 31% — the lowest of his time in office. Put it all together, and you see how vulnerable a president’s job approval rating is to the state of the economy.

As he considers a reelection race, Biden has problems he can fix, problems he can do a little about, and problems he cannot do anything about.
You have seen him try to move toward the center on two of his biggest vulnerabilities — the border and crime. Maybe he can do something about them and increase his approval in those areas.
Then there is the economy. Biden has already done a lot to damage the economy, mostly by pushing federal spending to unheard-of heights, which helped drive up the inflation rate that made making ends meet far more difficult for millions of people. Now, he could help by trying to reverse some of those policies, but he’s not going to do it because that would put him at odds with much of his Democratic base.
And then there are the things — the thing, actually — that Biden can do absolutely nothing about. He is 80 years old. He would be 82 at the start of a second term and 86 at the end. That is something that is always an underlying concern of voters, and Biden can’t change it.
One more thing. He apparently cannot, or will not, change his vice presidential running mate, either. And that could be another big problem for Biden 2024. A new report from Reuters said Biden is increasingly frustrated with the performance and attitude of Vice President Kamala Harris. Presidents look to vice presidents to take on difficult or unrewarding jobs, and Biden doesn’t see Harris doing that. “A point of tension in their relationship is that I don’t think that the president sees her as somebody who takes anything off his plate,” a former White House official told Reuters. The reason? Harris has a “fear of messing up,” the former official said. Another former White House official said Biden worries whether Harris is capable of “consistently rising to the occasion.”
Of course, the vice president already has low job approval ratings. It is fair to say she has not caught on with the public during her time in office. And beyond that, she does not fix any weakness that Biden has — that is, the two are not a complementary mix.
In the past, presidential candidates have picked running mates to make up for some of their own deficiencies. George W. Bush was thought to be callow, so he picked a government heavyweight, Dick Cheney, to be his running mate. Barack Obama was thought to be inexperienced, so he picked an experienced senator, Joe Biden, to be his running mate. Cheney and Biden lent heft to the ticket that the presidential candidate did not possess.
Now Biden is president himself, and with his decades of experience in government, his needs are different than those of Bush or Obama. As an 82-year-old candidate, he needs a vice president who voters believe could instantly assume the presidency and be able to do the job. Harris has not made that impression on voters. Her weakness heightens, rather than reduces, Biden’s weakness.
So that is Biden’s situation now as he plans to announce his 2024 candidacy. Voters worry about his advanced age. His job approval is low, extremely vulnerable to variations in the economy. And his vice president offers him no help. Not a good platform for the launch of a new campaign.
For a deeper dive into many of the topics covered in the Daily Memo, please listen to my podcast, The Byron York Show — available on the Ricochet Audio Network and everywhere else podcasts can be found.

Copyright © 2023 MEDIADC, All rights reserved.

Washington Examiner | A MediaDC Publication
1152 15th Street NW Suite 200 | Washington, DC 20005
You received this email because you are subscribed to WEX Author Alerts – York from The Washington Examiner.
Update your email preferences to choose the types of emails you receive.

We respect your right to privacy – read our Terms of Service, Privacy Policy, or Unsubscribe

The March Madness of the President: Victor Davis Hanson

The March Madness of the President

Joe Biden’s political utility and near senility serve as exemptions for his often sexist, racist, and creepy riffs.

By: Victor Davis Hanson

American Greatness

March 12, 2023

Another couple of weeks, another bout of madness from Joe Biden and his team. Of recent Biden delusions, consider:

ü Biden went off in one of his impromptu Corn Pop or “beat-up-Trump-behind-the-bleachers” fables. These often slurred and nearly unintelligible tales characteristically virtue signal Biden’s own victimhood and “courage.”

ü They are interspersed with his bizarre propensity for eerie female contact. So we see or hear of his long record of blowing into the ears and hair or squeezing the necks of young girls. He hugs, for far too long, mature women. He can call out among a crowd an anonymous attractive teen stranger. Or, recently he relates an incoherent but quasi-sexual vignette.

ü So Joe recalled his patient days in his usual off-topic “no lie/not kidding/no joke” manner (i.e., tip-offs that he’s lying). He told us that a noble nurse once would “come in and do things that I don’t think you learn in medical school—in nursing school.” The president got a nervous laugh from the apparent quasi-pornographic reference (but then again Joe is excused because he is a “feminist”) before he detailed her technique:

“She’d whisper in my ear. I didn’t—couldn’t understand her, but she’d whisper, and she’d lean down. She’d actually breathe on me to make sure that I was—there was a connection, a human connection.”

ü A woman leaning over to blow into a prone man’s ear certainly constitutes a “human connection.” Yet all of Joe’s fables have different Homeric-style retellings. Two years ago he claimed that the same nurse in question actually blew into his nostrils. What a strange air-pressure technique that must have entailed for a person recovering from brain surgery. But perhaps it was consistent with biblical references to God blowing the spirit of life into the nose of man.

ü About a week later, referencing that hospital stay, Biden added that doctors “had to take the top of my head off a couple of times, see if I had a brain”—a reference that did not reassure the nation he is not enfeebled.

ü No one in the media had much of a reaction because Joe Biden’s political utility and near senility serve as exemptions for his often sexist, racist, and creepy riffs.

ü Instead, the media wrote off the nurse breathing into good ol’ Joe’s orifices as belonging to the same weird genre that a while back gave us inner-city kids stroking the golden hairs on Joe’s tan legs, or the shower revelations of Ashley Biden’s diary, or his “you ain’t black,” “put y’all back in chains,” and “junkie” sorts of racial condescension (e.g., “Why the hell would I take a test? C’mon, man. That’s like saying before you got on this program, you take a test on whether you’re taking cocaine or not. What do you think? Huh? Are you a junkie?”).

ü Joe also blustered to a crowd during Black History Month, “I may be a white boy, but I’m not stupid.”

ü The crowd laughed at the idea that the jester Biden believes white people are usually stupid, but that he, Joe, the exception to his race, is not stupid, despite being white. At least Biden finally referenced himself as “boy.” Usually, he has used that racial putdown for prominent blacks like Maryland Governor Wes Moore or a senior White House advisor Cedric Richmond.

The February-March madness of Joe was not through. Sometimes, his venom renders him disgustedly comic, as when he took the occasion of mass American deaths from fentanyl on his watch, to chuckle that the carnage was at least worse under Trump (an abject lie):

‘I should digress, probably. I’ve read, she [Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene], she was very specific recently, saying that a mom, a poor mother who lost two kids to fentanyl, that, that I killed her sons. Well, the interesting thing is that fentanyl they took came during the last administration.’ Followed by the Biden laugh.

Apparently, 100,000 dead at least deserve from Joe a “Trump did it” chuckle.

Joe, for the third time in two years, tripped and nearly fell ascending the ramp of Air Force One. At some point, even his supporters will concede that when octogenarians repeatedly stumble and fall, if not put under careful watch or provided a walker, it is only a matter of time until they break a hip and become bedridden.

In another replay, once again Biden finished his remarks, turned around to exit—and had no idea where he was going to go or whose invisible hand he was supposed to shake.

Amid all this, Biden more or less stuck to his now tired rhetorical themes.

One is the serial denunciation of the MAGA Republicans. Usually, he trashes them as semi-fascists or un-American, often in the context of his “unity speeches.” After calling for reconciliation, bipartisanship, and unity, Joe then usually tightens his face, grimaces, and starts yelling about the MAGA dregs and chumps.

If Biden is really angry, he adds the intensive adjective “Ultra” for the MAGAites. He gets particularly incensed when referencing the one percent who “don’t pay their fair share” (the one percent pays over 40 percent of all income tax revenues). Biden is oblivious that the entire Biden clan is under popular suspicion of not reporting all of the millions of dollars in quid pro quos leveraging they raked in from foreign governments without registering as their agents.

Note that his entire team, when stung by charges of incompetency or illegality, usually follows Joe’s tactic of “Trump did it.” So when Pete Buttigieg was criticized for ignoring the East Palestine rail wreck and reminded of his past serial transportation failures, junkets, and incoherent systemic racism charges, he retreated to blaming Trump for the derailment.

Buttigieg falsely claimed that Trump’s past lifting of particular electric railcar brake regulations caused the wheel bearing failure in East Palestine, a lie that even members of his department could not stomach.

Too, Joe creates elaborate fables. In the past two weeks, he returned to his civil rights lie that he was a campus activist agitating for racial justice. At least he did not add his usual fillips of being arrested or standing up to apartheid police in South Africa.

In Biden’s world, he brags he has reduced inflation. Yet when he entered office in January 2021, the annualized inflation rate was 1.7 percent. Two years later in January 2023, inflation went up to 6.4 percent, after hitting a high in June 2022 of 9.1 percent—3 ¾ times higher than when he took office. In mid-March, we will learn of the February 2023 annualized rate, but it is expected to climb back to more than 8 percent.

If anyone compares the current price of eggs, rent, diesel fuel, a natural gas heating bill, or building materials to their respective costs when Biden entered office, then he would know Biden’s inflation is cumulative, and has nearly destroyed the affordability of shelter, food, and fuel—the stuff of life.

He mentioned lowering the heating and cooling costs of American homes through his climate change advocacy. In truth, on average electric rates shot up over 10 percent last year. Natural gas and fuel went even higher to over 25 percent in a single year.

Biden talks about his low unemployment rate of 3.4 percent. But it is almost identical to what the Trump Administration achieved—without Biden’s high interest rates and acute inflation—in the months before the massive COVID lockdowns.

Moreover, current low employment is largely a reflection of reduced labor participation—due to early retirements, exits during the pandemic, fear of COVID, long COVID, the zoom culture, and most importantly the Biden continuance of massive COVID-era subsidies that discourage employment. The labor participation rate has hit near historic lows under Biden, lower than the pre-COVID rate under Trump.

It was not until last month that the Biden economy finally achieved the level of total employed Americans who had been working in January 2020 on the eve of the Covid lockdowns.

As far as interest rates for 30-year fixed mortgages, they were 2.9 percent when Biden took office. Now they are currently over 7 percent -2.4 times higher than when Biden took office.

In sum, Biden repeats the same patterns of deception: crash the economy as evidenced by many of its major indicators, then when a data point reveals a slight and likely temporary monthly recovery, he brags he “reduced” inflation, interest, or unemployment.

We also heard during the same week from Biden Attorney General Merrick Garland who was shredded during his testimony to the Senate. He argued that the vastly disproportionate FBI response to violence against abortion centers versus attacks on pro-life groups was only due to the differences between light and dark—literally: abortion centers are attacked during daytime; in contrast, pro-life shelters are attacked during the night.

Apparently, his Justice Department and the FBI shut down at sunset and reawaken at dawn—as if either most violent crime does not occur at night or there is nothing to be done about it when it does.

Garland further embarrassed himself when he could not explain the disproportionate use of force in arresting or detaining conservative suspects versus the virtual exemptions given prominent left-wing suspects.

Most embarrassingly, when asked why he did not charge mobs that swarmed the homes of conservative Supreme Court justices to influence their decisions—a federal felony—he lamely claimed there were federals protecting the residences.

In Garland’s world, some criminals committing felonies are completely exempt if law enforcement prevents further violent manifestations of their criminal behavior. So illegally swarm a Supreme Court justice’s residence to influence a court decision, but then stop short of escalating further by the sight of law enforcement—and, presto, you never committed a crime in the first place.

Garland finished off his recent nonsense by repeating the lie that five police officers were killed due to the January 6 protests. In fact, none were. Officer Brian Sicknick died of natural causes after the protests were over. The other four committed suicide weeks or even months later and no one has connected their self-induced deaths with any act of the protestors.

About the same time, a beleaguered Pete Buttigieg went off on riffs about Tucker Carlson, who, he implied, lacked the grassroots, working-man fides of Buttigieg.

He claimed that for all the criticism he has endured, he believes that he will be remembered for posterity for his fight against “climate change”—although he did not point to any concrete result in reducing carbon emissions due to his singular policies.

Buttigieg will be known but for other characteristics: He repeatedly emphasizes his identity politics gay stature both to note his supposedly pathbreaking courage and to claim victimhood when attacked. He sees transportation through the lens of race and so chases the unicorn of white privilege, whether concerning past freeway routes or the makeup of current construction crews (falsely charging that white men are overrepresented on them). Under his tenure as Transportation Secretary, the country experienced dangerous supply interruptions, ossified ports, and harbor-bound trains robbed in Wild West fashion.

Buttigieg’s diversity mandates either did nothing to ameliorate or actually led to:

ü a series of near-miss airline crashes,

ü the complete shutdown of the airline industry due to computer glitches and weather,

ü the implosion for a week of Southwest Airlines,

ü the East Palestine derailment disaster, and

ü labor interruptions.

In all these cases he either was on leave or a junket, wrote them off as Trump’s fault, or contextualized them as no big deal.

Delusional Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Majorkas has declared the border closed and the nation secure, even as 100,000 Americans per year have died from overdoses of fentanyl shipped with impunity across the open border by Mexican cartels. When upwards of 7 million aliens flow across the border illegally since Biden took office, it is written off as Trump’s fault.

Finally, last week there were several interviews with FBI Director Christopher Wray. He could not explain why his agency goes full military mode to arrest a father and husband for protesting at an abortion clinic while having no clue who has been attacking pro-life shelters.

In Wray’s mind, the performance art sweep into Mar-a-Lago, which he claims was not a “raid,” was no different from having Biden’s lawyers quietly conduct their own “investigations” of Biden’s improper removal of classified documents (improper with an asterisk, since no vice president has the president’s legal authority to declassify whatever he wishes).

Wray could not explain why the FBI sat on the Biden trove until the midterm election was over, and then only acted to further search Biden’s residences when its own asymmetrical protocols came under fire.

Add up the last few weeks, and we learned that Christopher Wray’s FBI is doing splendidly in its even enforcement of the law. Merrick Garland’s Justice Department is absolutely disinterested and treats all sides equally. Alejandro Mayorkas has closed the border and we are now “secure.” Pete Buttigieg is building a legacy for the ages as a climate change crusader.

And an eloquent and dynamic Joe Biden has compiled an impressive legislative record on his way to a great presidency—with the energy, we are told by Dr. Jill Biden, that is more impressive than any 30-year-old’s.