Populist Joe Biden: 2020 is ‘Between Scranton and Park Avenue’

Audience members listen as Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden participates in a CNN town hall event on September 17, 2020 in Moosic, Pennsylvania. Due to the coronavirus, the event is being held outside with audience members in their cars. Biden grew up nearby in Scranton, Pennsylvania. …
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Joe Biden is portraying his 2020 campaign as a populist movement, even though his campaign is strongly backed by elites and Wall Street donors who favor mass immigration and wage-cutting free trade.

“I view this campaign as a campaign between Scranton and Park Avenue,” Biden told CNN on September 17. “All Trump can see from Park Avenue is Wall Street. All he thinks about is the stock market.”

“That’s just the best approach … that’s political gold,” MSNBC anchor Joe Scarborough said on September 18.

In reality, Biden departed Scranton at age 10, as his father left Pennsylvania in search of a job. Also, Trump’s curbs on cheap-labor migration helped raise household income by almost 7 percent in 2019.

Biden said:

I view this as a campaign between Scranton and [New York’s] Park Avenue. And I really mean it, because you know, the way we were raised up here in this area, an awful lot of hard-working people busting their necks. All they asked for was a shot, just a shot. All that Trump could see from Park Avenue is Wall Street. All he thinks about is the stock market and telling him, “We’re gonna do all right, everyone who owns stock.” How many of you all own stock? In my neighborhood in Scranton, not a whole hell of a lot of people own stock. And so we have to make sure that health care workers are paid, and paid a decent wage, and $15 bucks an hour isn’t enough.

He also claimed:

You know, growing up here in Scranton, we’re used to guys who look down their nose at us, and people who look at us and think that we’re suckers, [who] look at us, and they think that we’re not equivalent to them. [Who thought] if you didn’t have a college degree, you must be stupid, [or] if, in fact, you didn’t get to go to an Ivy school.

Maybe it’s my Scranton roots, I don’t know, but when you guys started talking on television about ‘Biden, if he wins, will be the first person without an Ivy League degree to be elected President,’ I’m thinking, who the hell makes you think I have to have an Ivy League degree to be President? I really mean it. I found my back up. No, I’m not joking. I’m not joking. Guys like me were the first in my family to go to college. Up here my dad busted his neck. My dad came up here, worked here, lost his job like a lot of people did here. … We are as good as anybody else. And guys like Trump, who inherited everything and squandered what they inherited, are the people that I’ve always had a problem with, not the people who are busting their neck.

Few bankers on Wall Street believe Biden’s claim of blue-collar populism, and most expect him to continue the wage-cutting, profit-boosting trade and immigration policies that Biden helped to implement under President Barack Obama. On September 7, the Washington Post reported:

When Joe Biden released economic recommendations two months ago, they included a few ideas that worried some powerful bankers: allowing banking at the post office, for example, and having the Federal Reserve guarantee all Americans a bank account. [Emphasis added]

But in private calls with Wall Street leaders, the Biden campaign made it clear those proposals would not be central to Biden’s agenda.

“They basically said, ‘Listen, this is just an exercise to keep the Warren people happy, and don’t read too much into it,’” said one investment banker, referring to liberal supporters of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). The banker, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe private talks, said that message was conveyed on multiple calls.

Financial executives are donating more funds to Democrat candidates than to GOP candidates, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Biden’s 2020 plan includes several proposals to expand the inflow of foreign workers and consumers into the United States. He promises to let mayors import foreign workers for local jobs, let companies import more visa workers for college jobs, expand the inflow of chain-migration migrants, suspend immigration enforcement against illegals, dramatically increase the inflow of poor refugees, and also provide more healthcare and other aid to arriving migrants.

The huge inflow of migrants will lower Americans’ wages, transfer more wages to investors, shift jobs from the interior states to the coasts, reduce investment in wealth-generating technology, and exacerbate the chaotic diversity that has damaged U.S. society and politics.

In contrast, President Donald Trump says he is pushing a “Pro-American Immigration” policy.

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