• President’s speech to a joint session of Congress this week continues America’s political divide

100 days ago, Biden made his first speech as POTUS, emphasizing a theme of unity amongst Americans and his mission to close up the country’s political divide. 100 days later, and his speech to a joint session of Congress relayed a very different and broadly generalized message.

Politics aside, lawmakers across the board have agreed that Biden’s American Families Plan (AFP) is both expensive and ambitious. The AFP presents the image of a cradle-to-grave, ideal Americana: increased access to free education and child care services, as well as paid family and medical leave. It’s the version of our country that progressive Americans dream about, but it comes at a frightening cost that is keeping left-leaning conservatives and on-the-fence moderates from fully boarding the Biden-Harris train.

Biden’s $1.8 trillion proposal would be an additional burden on the US’s regular budget—certainly not a discounted price tag—and would be funded by tax hikes on corporations and America’s top bracket of wealthy taxpayers. And while Biden relayed this idealist message Wednesday night with a shocking confidence, it is probably not enough to convince steadfast realists and Trumpist conservatives.

One critic pointed out the truth: “Biden does not have the luxury of normalcy,” and, as such, he’s taking bold strokes to bring America back to a place of normalcy. But is it worth taking taxpayers’ money and consequently risking their trust this early on in his presidency?

Biden has a 54% approval rating thus far on his success as a president in his first 100 days, which trumps Trump’s 45% but falls well below those of Obama’s 62% and Bush’s 63%. Though Biden is scoring better than Trump when it comes to approval ratings, reviews on his Wednesday night speech remain a mixed bag of opinions, leaving conservatives and liberals ever-divided and moderates disappointed and confused.

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Devin McQuillan
Associate, Creative Solutions

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