Biden’s Fantasies About a New New Deal Are a Mirage

In 2020, it was widely reported that Joe Biden wanted to be a “transitional” president. At a campaign event in Detroit, appearing with several younger, more progressive Democratic politicians, he seemed to endorse this idea.

“Look, I view myself as a bridge, not as anything else,” Biden said. “There’s an entire generation of leaders you saw stand behind me. They are the future of this country.” 

His pitch wasn’t just about his age. Biden made the case that his more moderate stance on various issues was necessary to get elected. The message to the base was, in effect: “You need to tolerate my opposition to socialized medicine and defunding the police if you want Trump out of the White House.”

But then, after he was elected, Biden got it into his head that he could “go big.” All of a sudden there was a lot of New Deal talk. The progressive base, some liberal historians, and cheerleaders in the press convinced Biden that he could be a transformative, not transitional, president who would usher in a new progressive era. 

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