What Joe Biden Needs to Avoid in the 2022 Midterms

Eric Medlin

History instructor. Writer. Rising star in the world of affordable housing.

Related Post Roulette

14 Responses

  1. North
    Ignored
    says:

    Pondering what the big issues will be in 11 months and what the Admin/Party can do regarding it.

    Economics:
    This is a tough one to move at will and always an important one for voters. Keep doing what they’re doing basically? Figure out what Manchinema will accept and pass that.

    Inflation:
    I think Bidens’ on the right track here. He’s been very supportive of the Fed regarding what decisions they have/will make. The market believes (via long term price contracts) that, if inflation keeps up, that the central bank will stomp on it and Biden won’t interfere.

    Covid:
    Whatever bureaucracy that is holding up tests, vaccines and treatments Biden needs to lean hard on it to move with all possible haste. The bureaucracy always wants to spend time to get certainty and won’t choose otherwise unless political pressure and cover is provided. Biden needs to generate both.

    Schools:
    This is a big one, I fear. The science is unambiguous. A fully vaccinated and boosted adult teacher in a school with masking has trivial odds of catching Covid, lightning strike odds of getting seriously sick and lightning strike PLUS lottery winning odds of dying from Covid. There is no balance between teacher safety and the needs of kids (especially poor and minority kids) for in person learning. The latter’s needs utterly dominate the former. The unions have no ground to stand on if they are pushing for remote learning. If they try to go to the matt to force remote learning then a boot needs to be publicly kicked in their faces and it’d be salutary for the Dems if that boot was blue.

    Foreign Affairs:
    No fishing wars. I think Bidens on track with this. Afghanistan is a non-issue now which proves that Bidens call to leave was the correct one. The only hot spot that could be an issue is Ukraine but I don’t honestly think that Putin is dumb enough to invade. If he does then they should levy serious sanctions, boot Russia off of Swift and go after all the Russian assets sequestered in foreign banks.Report

    • Philip H in reply to North
      Ignored
      says:

      Economics – the Administration also needs to lean harder on the media to reframe its successes. Right now the narrative doesn’t favor the things the Administration has actually accomplished. That’s got to change ASAP.

      Inflation – spot on.

      COVID (Tied to Schools) – the Administration has to fight for mandates for vaccinations, and has to fight in the court of public opinion as much as the actual courts. Teacher vaccine and mask mandates are a must, but counting on local school districts to do this is folly, especially in red states. The trade off has to be crystal clear – if you want open schools, then you have to have 100% adult vaccinations of faculty and staff, and full masking. The Administration also needs to up the game on funding air filtration in schools, which few districts can afford to overhaul quickly.

      Foreign Affairs – Putin may have bigger problems then invading Ukraine if the protests in Kazakhstan continue and spread. The Administration should make clear its support for those protests, and freeze the funds of any state that intervenes. And play up the old Cold War sentiments against Russia while they do it.Report

      • North in reply to Philip H
        Ignored
        says:

        I basically agree with you on most points here Philip. Pushing the media on narrative is a necessary part of the job but it’s so fishing difficult to move media narratives. It’s a game as old as media and our media is so fishin set on their false even handedness. What can ya do?

        I’m 100% in favor of vaccine mandates and masking requirements. I don’t have a beef with air systems/filtration, it’s a good general policy but it is a side show on Covid so long as you have full teacher (and pervasive student) vaccination and general masking.

        I am not comfortable about getting granular about foreign policy because I don’t have much confidence in my knowledge about it. I’d be pretty strongly inclined, personally, to take a light hand on Kazakhstan which is so outside of the US interests as to be virtually on the moon. Say the right things human rights wise but butt out otherwise. If Putin feels like he’s being besieged or encircled he’s liable to do something stupid. Time is on the US’ side. Strategic patience is, thus, to our benefit.Report

        • Philip H in reply to North
          Ignored
          says:

          Kazakhstan shows a way for people in Hungry and even Russia to start pushing back against their regimes – which has benefit in the US as showing why the right wing embrace of these regimes is so troubling.

          And the President of Kazakhstan has ordered his police and military to shoot protestors openly without warning. Seems to me we don’t want to just send thoughts and prayers after that, but we don’t want to send troops either.Report

          • InMD in reply to Philip H
            Ignored
            says:

            We have no interest there. I haven’t looked at polling but I would be shocked if Kazakhstan is a top 25 issue of any voting demographic. Maybe foreign policy cranks and militarists within a 20 mile radius of DC. Other than that I doubt many people are even aware something is going on there.Report

          • North in reply to Philip H
            Ignored
            says:

            This isn’t the back yard of some some tin pot dictator in a mud hut in the middle of a desert in no where. It’s mother fishin Russia with a massive military, enough nukes to destroy the world and a whole mountain of fishing belligerence and inferiority complexes. The last thing we need is a W. Fishing Bush (still, bar none, the most terrible and destructive to American interests President in modern history- Trump doesn’t come close) only under the Democratic brand.

            Speaking softly and acting with intelligence and restraint is imperative.Report

      • Koz in reply to Philip H
        Ignored
        says:

        Economics – the Administration also needs to lean harder on the media to reframe its successes. Right now the narrative doesn’t favor the things the Administration has actually accomplished. That’s got to change ASAP.

        Real Americans aren’t going to entertain any lib media feelgood economics propaganda while we’re still living in the current virus regime.

        Foreign Affairs – Putin may have bigger problems then invading Ukraine if the protests in Kazakhstan continue and spread. The Administration should make clear its support for those protests, and freeze the funds of any state that intervenes. And play up the old Cold War sentiments against Russia while they do it.

        For better or worse, I don’t see anything relating to Kazakhstan that materially changes Putin/Russia’s intentions wrt Ukraine (and it’s probably for the worse).Report

      • Pinky in reply to Philip H
        Ignored
        says:

        What makes the economy a particularly bad issue for the Democrats is that, for now at least, it’s doing worse in their districts than in the R ones. That puts “blue” voters less pleased with the status quo, and “red” voters more pleased.

        Of course you can’t really separate the economy from inflation. Usually the president gets disproportionate credit or blame for this, but today’s problems are closely tied to policy. People are afraid to go out and find work, and the supply chain problems are driving up costs. This could turn around pretty quickly, and I hope it does, but then again a lot of inflation is psychological, and a sudden availability of larger paychecks could drive up prices even more.Report

    • Brandon Berg in reply to North
      Ignored
      says:

      Keep doing what they’re doing basically? Figure out what Manchinema will accept and pass that.

      What they’re doing right now is not passing BBB because they can’t get Machinema on board. It seems to be working pretty well.Report

    • Koz in reply to North
      Ignored
      says:

      This is a big one, I fear. The science is unambiguous. A fully vaccinated and boosted adult teacher in a school with masking has trivial odds of catching Covid, lightning strike odds of getting seriously sick and lightning strike PLUS lottery winning odds of dying from Covid. There is no balance between teacher safety and the needs of kids (especially poor and minority kids) for in person learning. The latter’s needs utterly dominate the former. The unions have no ground to stand on if they are pushing for remote learning.

      If this issue cuts any ice at all for you, get ready to start voting Republican.Report

  2. Pinky
    Ignored
    says:

    “Such a defeat is eminently worrying to both political observers and the Democratic Party.”

    What a small spectrum of political observers you must follow! I mean, not even a courtesy reference to “many political observers” or even “astute political observers”. All of them!Report

  3. Dark Matter
    Ignored
    says:

    RE: Covid
    Covid is going to infect everyone over the next two months and then it will burn out. It’s going to be a really nasty two months but the election will be later. Maybe late enough that covid will be a history books thing.

    RE: Trump
    The real question is whether Jan 6th will be an issue and how it will play out. The GOP seems determined to play the “It wasn’t me” game because a good hunk of their base wants that. Whether everyone else punishes them will be interesting.

    This is where we get into potentially “unelectable” territory.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_x6QmuJdmsReport

  4. Koz
    Ignored
    says:

    The OP has the right framing, I think, but at least part of the conclusions are wrong.

    Demo’s have to think about 2024 because 2022 is a lost cause and 2024 is their first, and maybe last for a while, shot at competitiveness. 2022 is baked in the cake and has been for a while, and probably not just a five or ten seat thing either. I’d be shocked if GOP gets out of 2022 with less than 230 House seats and probably at least 240.

    In any case, the goal for Republicans is the flip side of the OP: win enough House seats to where that chamber is, realistically out of play for 2024.Report

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *