Anniversary in Washington – Twelve months ago, Joe Biden was elected US President. However, there can be no sign of a celebratory mood “from coast to coast”…
Inflation and supply shortages
U.S. citizens are being plagued by a seven percent inflation rate these days, the highest in nearly 40 years. Daily shopping is being spoiled for many people, as are trips to the gas station, flanked by supply shortages, causing Biden’s approval ratings to crumble.
Biden is facing correspondingly poor poll numbers: According to the online platform Real Clear Politics, which collects and analyzes various polls, only about 42 percent of Americans still think Biden is doing a good job.
A year ago, the president’s approval rating was just as high as 56 percent. Of all U.S. presidents since World War II, only former President Donald Trump had a worse result one year after taking office. To be fair, however, it must be emphasized here that Trump was permanently maligned by the mass media, while Biden was covered neutrally or uncritically / unnaturally positively. Certainly, unemployment continued to fall at the end of last year to a rate of 3.9 percent, the same level as before the Covid crisis.
However, the question arises as to what this means, because the American labor world is also characterized by so-called MC jobs and by the working poor, who barely make ends meet despite employment and not infrequently work two or three part-time jobs.
Domestic political tensions and foreign policy defeats
Domestically, Biden’s presidency was overshadowed right at the beginning by the storming of the Capitol. The deep divisions in society that this symbolized were not – and could not – be overcome even by Biden.
In foreign policy, the disorganized flight of U.S. troops from Afghanistan – visible to the whole world – manifested the failure of the United States in the War on Terror and thus also the precariousness of the superpower in global competition.
Biden paints a rosy picture of his time in office
Joe Biden defended his administration’s record Wednesday against criticism. I know there’s a lot of frustration and fatigue in this country” he expressed at one of his rare White House press conferences. Continuing, Biden spoke of a year of challenges, but also of “enormous progress.”
While Biden endeavored to present his first twelve months in rosy colors to the press representatives, a gloomy picture was painted not only in the media close to the Republicans, but also in the media flagships of the Democrats.
Without a change of strategy, the Democrats are in danger of a fiasco. “Biden needs a reset” analyzed “Washington Post” columnist Jennifer Rubin.
However, it is not only the criticism in the liberal media that is causing Biden problems in his administration, but also the pandemic management. At the beginning of his presidency, Biden was able to score points with this and in particular with a successful vaccination campaign in the first few months. But then the euphoria soon fizzled out: in the meantime, all that can be heard is a sluggish vaccination campaign.
Waiting for “independence from a deadly virus”
There was a defeat in the U.S. Supreme Court last week. The Supreme Court blocked Biden’s vaccination and testing requirements for major companies despite skyrocketing Covid infection numbers. On July 4 – the national holiday – Biden saw the U.S. “closer than ever to declaring our independence from a deadly virus” The Delta and Omicron variants then put a stop to that.
Blood flows in the streets
In addition, there is the skyrocketing crime rate, which began under Trump’s tenure but continues under Biden. “Crime in the U.S.: Blood flows in the cities.” Almost daily, the U.S. media reports deadly shootings on a scale long thought impossible. Especially in states and cities led by Democrats, this seems to be the case.
Stymied by his own party
In the debate on the abolition of the controversial filibuster rule, Biden was unable to prevail against critical party colleagues – a major tactical mistake that undermined his authority, because it was precisely due to internal party blockades that he failed in the end.
“When Biden tried to overturn the Senate’s filibuster rule to pave the way for a bill to strengthen voting rights, it ended in embarrassment. Senator Sinema gave a combative, polemical speech to justify her no vote. How skeptical she and her party colleague Manchin were about undermining the filibuster was known beforehand. That Biden, albeit with noble intent, wanted to push through a rule change without having the votes to do so now makes him look like an amateur.” – A prominent Austrian newspaper commented
When Joe Biden took office a year ago, he was even compared to Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the symbolic figure of the New Deal in the 1930s.
D. Roosevelt succeeded in containing the economic catastrophe at the beginning of the 1930s, after his predecessor Herbert C. Hoover had still proclaimed “Business as usual, prosperity is around the corner”. However, the economic stabilization of Roosevelt’s policy was not permanent.
The relapse into stagnation was only overcome by the increasing intervention of the U.S. in the warlike turmoil of Europe, up to and including total war entry and the associated stimulation of a gigantic arms industry. In terms of foreign policy, Biden has turned out to be a hawk, a hawk with clipped claws, who is trying to compensate for the domestic turmoil of the U.S., as well as the creeping decline in world politics, through a confrontation with the People’s Republic of China. History will tell us how this experiment will end.