Joe Biden campaigned on a message of being a uniter in chief, a man who would bring supposed bipartisanship and goodwill back to Washington, D.C. after four years of President Trump telling establishment members of the House and Senate to stuff it.
His promises rang hollow for Republicans who remembered the decades of Biden displaying some of the most hardcore and ruthless partisanship ever seen in the nation’s capital, from his abhorrent treatment of SCOTUS nominees Clarence Thomas (1991) and Robert Bork (1987) to telling black voters in 2012 that the Mitt Romney-Paul Ryan presidential ticket would “put you all back in chains.”
Nevertheless, the mainstream media ate up Biden’s “unity!” promises and responded accordingly post-election by (mis)informing voters that the era of healing was officially underway. It did not take long, however, for Biden’s self-serving calls for people to come together to start self-destructing.
Three full months into Biden’s presidency, even some in the MSM have noticed that Biden is failing to live up his promises on the healing and unity front. During Monday’s press briefing, one reporter point-blank asked press secretary Jen Psaki how Biden could square wanting to “bring the country back together” with the fact that he hasn’t met with Republican leaders to date, and the fact that a lot of the legislation and ideas Biden has pushed and continues to push has little to no support from Republicans in Congress.
Psaki’s answer gave the game away. Here’s how the exchange went down (bolded emphasis added):
Reporter: “Hey, a question on unity. You know, you talk about — earlier, you said you wanted to bring — or the President wanted to “bring the country back together.” So, I guess, the question is: He has not met with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, according to Kevin McCarthy. What does that say about unity?
And also, there are some other legislative issues, as it relates to H.R. 1 and a commission to study packing the Supreme Court, as you would say. And there’s a lot of other lists as well — budget reconciliation. So, there’s a lot of folks — you talk about tens of millions of people — that are concerned about that this doesn’t seem like unity at all.”
Psaki: “Do you think tens of millions are people are concerned about him not meeting with Kevin McCarthy?”
Reporter: “No, I think of tens of millions of people are concerned about H.R. 1 and budget reconciliation and going with a 50-vote threshold. I think that was a concern.”
Psaki: “I’m not sure the polling bears that out. But I will say that the President’s view is that bringing the country together is bringing the American people together. So, when I say he is — he is focused on re- — bringing — you know, bringing people together, bringing Democrats and Republicans together, he is not talking about solving bipartisanship in the — this ZIP Code here. He is talking about proposing policies that address the crises that we’re facing, whether it’s getting the pandemic under control, putting people back to work.
A lot of those policies he’s proposed — whether it’s the American Rescue Plan or the American Jobs Plan — are supported by the vast majority of the American public — Democrat, Republican, independent.”
She then offered up some meaningless platitudes about how Biden was still interested in working “with people of all different viewpoints.”
The short version of her answer was that “bipartisanship” to the Biden administration has nothing to do with bringing both parties together in Washington, D.C. to get legislation hammered out and passed. It has to do with the White House’s perception that most people in America agree with their agenda.
Biden's Press Secretary Jen Psaki claims when Biden promised bipartisanship he didn’t mean legislatively in DC pic.twitter.com/fsC75IGnkM
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) April 26, 2021
Newsbusters executive editor Tim Graham provided the perfect translation for Psaki’s spinsanity:
This definition of bipartisanship is stupid.
"We're going to be bipartisan by pleasing vaguely Republican suburbanites in liberal media polls, and skip meeting with Republican congressional leaders and pass everything without Republican votes." https://t.co/5beIe2dgIB
— Tim Graham (@TimJGraham) April 27, 2021
Memo to Joe Biden, Jen Psaki, and those at CNN who still continue to think Biden’s brand of “bipartisanship” is “refreshing”: It’s not.
Biden’s version of “bipartisanship” is exactly the kind of phony “unity and healing” Republicans predicted it would be: Paying lip service to bringing both political parties and the country together under the guise of “moving America forward,” all while ramming through radical legislation without a single Republican vote. It was meaningless and empty rhetoric then, and Jen Psaki confirmed it with her response during yesterday’s briefing.
In light of the White House’s revised definition of “bipartisanship,” members of the MSM who have dogged House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell over their opposition to Biden’s agenda should consider revisiting the issue in light of Psaki’s comments. What’s the point in reaching out to Biden when he’s made it clear he’s not interested in working with you?