Steve Benen, MSBNC’s Woke scribe, rejoiced this morning behind the auspices of contrasting President Biden’s “popularity” to that of his salt and pepper predecessors.
Why Biden hasn’t seen a Tea Party-style backlash (so far) issued the timid conjecture. Hidden in the frightened shadows of his question are niggling doubts. (“When will Biden’s ineptitude and unpopularity come home to roost?” murmurs his uneasy voice in headspace)
For the most part, President Joe Biden has begun his term as a relatively popular leader. FiveThirtyEight’s averages of the latest national surveys show the Democrat with a 54% approval rating — a level of support his immediate predecessor never reached during his White House tenure.
In theory, Biden’s support would be even higher, but in a time of intense political polarization, so many Republican voters reflexively oppose a Democratic president that more robust poll numbers are nearly impossible. That said, as HuffPost noted in an interesting item, “a mass movement in opposition” to Biden simply hasn’t materialized yet.
“In theory.” OK.
Benen is a Biden loyalist who harbors delusions of Biden grandeur. In his mind, Biden’s Presidency is transcendent and its presumed virtue is pre-ordained, an immutable cosmic function of political reality.
Benen is a Biden Supremacist.
The only possible reason he can conjure that Republicans don’t like Biden is because he’s a Democrat. In the hivemind of a Biden Supremacist, it is a logical extension of observation that Joe Biden’s ethereal nature is untouchable; there can be no earthly reason why we should oppose him if not for the cruel call of party loyalty.
Biden is just that fantastic.
Benen seems to have conveniently forgotten that just several months ago a large portion of the Democratic populace was reflexively anti-Trump. Anything that had the Trump stamp, directly or by association, was despised by Democrats and its assorted minions by default.
At his point 12 years ago, meanwhile, NBC News found the public largely divided on the issue — 47% wanted government to do more, while 46% wanted the opposite — and in the months that followed, opponents of government activism gradually built an enduring advantage.
But in the latest national poll, released last week, NBC News found 55% of the public wants government to do more, not less. This is hardly the basis for a Tea Party-style backlash.
Similarly, Gallup released a report in March that explained, “The latest update shows that 54% of Americans say the government should do more to solve our country’s problems, while 41% say the government is trying to do too many things that should be left to individuals and businesses. This is the highest percentage choosing the ‘government should do more option since Gallup began asking the question in 1992.”
Benen should keep in mind that we are coming out of one of the most polarized, collectively traumatizing years in American history. The pervasive stain of death and violence naturally creates a reliance on parental government. This manifests as a desperate socialist model that will remain burrowed in our American consciousness for some time.
It’s against this backdrop that the latest surveys pointed to roughly two-thirds support for the White House’s American Relief Plan, American Jobs Plan, and American Families Plan.
And since Benen is a Biden Supremacist, he is unable to fathom that this fresh American reliance on governmental assistance is not a statement speaking to Biden’s policy, it’s a reaction to his fortuitous timing that has placed him in a position to happily exploit American helplessness for his party’s ends. Republicans would do the same.
Republicans may be waiting for a broad national backlash to Biden’s popular proposals, but given public attitudes, such a reaction appears unlikely to grow organically.
I’d like to issue a warning to Benen and others of his ilk, a word to the wise, so to speak:
Government assistance and free-flowing gibs are en vogue but they do not automatically invoke Woke liberalism. Many on the Right, especially the non-boomer betrayed-by-the-GOP Right, might embrace government intervention if it is tailored to improve the status of American citizens. They would welcome it, in fact: for Americans first.
Government assistance in the context of America First should be your biggest fear if your are a Leftist. You shouldn’t be worried about Donald Trump or Russians or racism.
Paint your anxieties on it all you want; call it nationalism, fascism, I don’t care, you have many hyperbolic labels of fear, but if 2020 accelerated a socialist spark in Americans, it also sparked the kernels of Americanism.