Joe Biden’s Big Squeeze Progressive donors to the left of him, cynical centrists to the right — a theory of why his popular agenda is so unpopular.

By Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine

It is scarcely an exaggeration to say that the fate of American democracy may hinge on President Joe Biden’s success. If his approval rating sinks too far below 50 percent, it becomes more likely than not that the next election will reinstall into power his exiled predecessor, who has never relinquished his claim and by all appearances is intent on running for a second term in 2024.

The Democrats had a plan to rescue their party and the country: Biden would steer clear of the faddish slogans and radical demands that had seized his party’s base and focus relentlessly on practical benefits desired by the working-class voters who had deserted Democrats for Donald Trump. The elegance of this plan was that polls showed support not only for the new social provisions that would form the heart of his legislative agenda in his first year — child care, community college, expansions of Medicare and Medicaid, and so on — but also for the sources of their funding. The money would come from taxing the rich, bargaining down the cost of prescription drugs, and going after wealthy tax cheats.



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