Who Is Running the Administration, and Why Do They Refuse to Tell Those at the Top Their Plans?

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

This morning’s announced visit by the Bidens to Miami Beach is just another in the long list of contradictions from the administration.

The White House put out the announcement this morning that President Biden and her husband, Joe, will be making a stop at the Miami Beach enclave of Surfside, the site of the tragic condominium collapse. This is not too surprising of a visit, as Presidents frequently make tours of disaster areas, meeting with local officials and emergency experts, and coordinating relief efforts.

It just seems like it was the kind of detail someone should have told the White House Press Secretary.

It was less than 24 hours ago when Jen Psaki was asked about a Biden trip to Miami and she said directly that there was no intention for him to go there. “President Joe Biden has no plans at this time to travel to the site of a deadly condo building collapse in South Florida,” she said in response. “We don’t want to draw resources that are needed in the ongoing search and rescue operations and efforts. We will remain in contact with officials on the ground.”

In the span of just 18 hours, nothing at the disaster site has changed, regarding those cautions mentioned by Psaki, but now, suddenly, there is a trip lined up for the visit on Thursday. This becomes just the latest from an administration that is perpetually showing signs of disarray and conflicting messaging, and far more than quotidian travel plans are seen as examples.

This new example takes place as the administration is still in the process of untangling the prior conflict in messaging. Last week was supposed to be a triumph for President Biden as the bi-partisan agreement on the sprawling infrastructure bill was being announced, but then that agreement was scuttled — by President Biden himself. Immediately after a Thursday presser touting the bill, Biden gave a follow-up and declared he would not sign the new bill unless it was tied directly to his $6 trillion budget reconciliation package plan.

In a move the Wall Street Journal declared an Instant Bipartisan Double Cross, Biden completely compromised the goodwill in crafting the infrastructure deal, and possibly killed it entirely. Sen GOP Leader Mitch McConnell did not hold back in his condemnation of the move.Endorse the agreement in one breath, and threaten to veto it in the next. It almost makes your head spin.”

Friday was filled with media questions about the sudden threat of a veto on the very bill Biden pushed to pass, and next, the White House had to scramble, with a new statement from the President coming out on Saturday. 

At a press conference after announcing the bipartisan agreement, I indicated that I would refuse to sign the infrastructure bill if it was sent to me without my Families Plan and other priorities, including clean energy. My comments also created the impression that I was issuing a veto threat on the very plan I had just agreed to, which was certainly not my intent.

That is a specific choice of wording, as we have spent his first months as president trying to figure out what his intentions are at times because we are delivered frequent conflicting messages. Regarding the landmark Abraham Accords forged by President Trump, the Biden administration cannot decide if they support the plans, or oppose them, if Joe was expanding on the plan, or if they need to have their name stripped entirely.

This follows other significant signs that various sectors in the administration are unaware of what others are doing. Biden announced he was canceling any investigation into the Wuhan lab leak story, only to turn a 180 and announce an investigation just days later. He made a loud pronouncement when he was halting the construction of the border wall, but then as the crisis continued to grow, the president announced sections were to be resumed being built.

Then there was the announcement that Vice President Kamala Harris was going to be assigned the lead role in addressing the border concerns. It looked abjectly inept when soon after, Harris’ own office disavowed that she would be involved. And now, of course, they have turned that position again, and now she is involved.

In a normal political environment, an administration displaying this inability to keep their messaging straight — on major issues, which frequently see positional shifts — would be seen as alarming to most. But, as we know, things are not normal. With near party parity in D.C., the Democrats and the media are demanding fealty on every single issue as if they have a super-majority mandate, because they know how tenuous their power is. 

Desperation to retain control means all signs of ineffectiveness and confusion from the leadership have to be ignored. The veil of competency needs to remain in order to show a rationale behind the power struggle, so the press does its job for the cause…by refusing to do its job and report on the rather obvious problems.