Joe Biden claimed last fall that he was not the socialist that many conservatives, including myself, predicted he would be once in office.
“I beat the socialist,” he protested.
But those of us who were watching closely noticed that Biden had begun using the radical rhetoric of socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT).
Long after securing his party’s nomination, Biden began talking about “revolutionary institutional changes,” “fundamentally transform[ing]” the country, and “systemic racism.”
One theme that emerged was the idea that Biden would be the most “progressive” president since Franklin Delano Roosevelt, whose New Deal policies prolonged the Great Depression but also hooked Americans on Big Government.
Last April, Biden promised Sanders “one of the most progressive administrations since Roosevelt.” The next day, former President Barack Obama echoed that claim, calling Biden’s policies “the most progressive platform of any major party nominee in history.”
It was never clear where “progressive” ended and “socialist” began.
The supposed difference between Biden and Sanders in the primary was that Biden did not support “Medicare for All,” citing the high cost. (“I want to know, how did they find $35 trillion?” he asked. “Is it going to significantly raise taxes on the middle class, which it will?”)
But now Biden is proposing trillions of dollars in new spending every few weeks, and his “COVID relief” law included a large Obamacare expansion.
In March, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki called the “COVID relief” package “the most progressive bill in American history.”
That’s more progressive than FDR’s Social Security Act of 1935, or Lyndon Johnson’s Medicare law in 1965, or the Affordable Care Act of 2010, Obama’s big achievement.
Conservative author, litigator, and radio host Mark Levin argued recently that Biden’s primary concern is his legacy. And for a Democrat of his generation, FDR’s legacy is the one to beat. Meanwhile, with Biden looking backwards, the young radicals in his administration are looking forward to a utopian future, one informed by the Marxists and Critical Race Theory scholars they were taught to admire in their elite universities. They are supplying the policies that enable Biden’s historical narcissism.
Take Biden’s new $2.3 trillion “infrastructure” proposal — only 5% of which, or $115 billion, is allocated to fixing America’s roads. The plan devotes almost twice as much, $213 billion, to “produce, preserve, and retrofit” over two million homes. It also offers $20 billion in tax credits build or rehabilitate 500,000 homes “for low- and middle-income homebuyers.”
These proposals come in the middle of a housing construction boom and at a time of record-low interest rates for homebuyers. Biden wants the federal government to barge into the homebuilding business when there is absolutely no government needed.
Housing is expensive in some of the urban enclaves where affluent Democrats like to live, or in the suburbs to which they are returning. But that problem is as much the result of zoning rules and environmental ideology — another product of left-wing governance — as anything else. Biden also wants $40 billion for the public housing system, throwing good money after bad.
Moreover, Biden has suddenly decided that after spending trillions of dollars in borrowed money on “COVID relief,” his infrastructure plan must be paid for by tax hikes. To that end, he is promoting class warfare, using the lie that 83% of the Trump tax cuts went to the top 1% of earners. (The true figure is closer to 20%; over 80% of middle-class households saw taxes drop.)
This is socialism in all but name, the product of the most left-wing primary in American history. We told you so.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book is How Not to Be a Sh!thole Country: Lessons from South Africa. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.