Biden Report Card: Inflation, Manchin, Harris trip foil week

This week’s White House Report Card finds President Joe Biden cruising through the G-7 economic summit in Britain and readying for what is expected to be a tense meeting next week with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

He might want to stay there longer, though, considering what’s happening back home, where inflation is rising, his legislative agenda is stalled by members of his own party, and the historic immigration crisis was made worse by Vice President Kamala Harris — who flubbed her first foreign trip as the border czar.

Conservative grader Jed Babbin highlighted the problems facing Biden in Congress and the courts and graded an “F.” Democratic pollster John Zogby highlighted some of the hurdles facing Biden but noted that he’s bolstered by a 54% approval rating.

Jed Babbin
Grade: F

This was one of those weeks for which Biden would have earned a grade lower than an “F” if there was one. Among its failures were Harris’s “excellent adventure” to Central America, a couple of blows to his agenda, and the continuing surge of inflation driven by his radical spending spree.

Harris’s first venture into diplomacy proved difficult. The context for her trip was the surge of illegal immigrants coming to the United States at the rate of more than 180,000 per month, a crisis she’s supposed to be handling for Biden. The trip began with Harris handing cookies, baked in her own image, to reporters on Air Force Two. The lady’s narcissism knows no bounds, and the trip went downhill from there.

Arriving in Guatemala to offer $4 billion to Guatemalans to stay home, she was greeted by President Alejandro Giammattei, who said that Biden was at fault for the border crisis. Harris told Guatemalans not to come because they’d be turned back. Nobody believed that.

Harris’s second stop was in Mexico. The biggest problem we have with Mexico is its refusal to take back illegal migrant families that the U.S. wants to expel. She didn’t, by her own admission, even raise the matter with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

Then, there is surging inflation, now at 5% above where it was last year. Food and gasoline prices (the latter also propelled by Biden’s anti-energy policy) continue to rise, affecting the poor more than the wealthy.

West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin said he’d vote against Biden’s election “reform” bill that would effectively put the federal authorities in control of all elections. He and Arizona Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema also won’t support overturning the filibuster, which will keep it intact — for which they should be thanked by all of us.

The courts weren’t any kinder to Biden’s agenda. A federal court in California held that state’s assault weapons ban unconstitutional, which won’t entirely kill Biden’s anti-gun agenda but is a huge blow to it. And the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit ruled that Biden’s plan to award COVID-19 relief to businesses based on race and gender is unconstitutional and invalid. And the Supreme Court found that aliens here on temporary status weren’t eligible for permanent resident status.

Biden’s agenda is comatose. Another week like the last one and it’ll be entirely dead.

John Zogby
Grade: B-

Both Biden and Harris went abroad this week.

Biden’s goal was simply to look presidential, putting key European allies’ fears to rest that he is not Donald Trump and that the U.S. is still committed to defense alliances, reducing the impact of climate change, and proving to be a partner in the fight against COVID-19. He appeared to have been successful and was embraced by Britain’s Boris Johnson and France’s Emmanuel Macron.

Next week, Biden will meet with Russia’s Vladimir Putin, who has been weakened by domestic protests, growing international revulsion at his behavior, and worsening health. Biden, meanwhile, holds the best foreign policy portfolio of any George H.W. Bush or perhaps even Richard Nixon and has been firm in his readiness to impose new sanctions on Moscow. Biden appears to be clear and resolute as he readies for what is expected to be a tense meeting.

Meanwhile, Harris had a rough go at it in her trip to Central America and has been chastised from the Right and the Left. But this is not her report card.

Consumer prices continue to soar (not just rise), but so far, there has been no real impact on Biden’s polling numbers, which stand at 54% approval. Inflation, though, does have people buzzing.

Jed Babbin is a Washington Examiner contributor and former deputy undersecretary of defense in the administration of former President George H.W. Bush. Follow him on Twitter @jedbabbin

John Zogby is the founder of the Zogby Poll and senior partner at John Zogby Strategies. His weekly podcast with son and partner Jeremy Zogby can be heard here. Follow him on Twitter @ZogbyStrategies

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Tags: Washington Secrets, Inflation, Biden Administration, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Border Crisis, G7, Vladimir Putin, Joe Manchin

Original Author: Paul Bedard

Original Location: Biden Report Card: Inflation, Manchin, Harris trip foil week