Editorial: Biden can’t read the room

President Joe Biden is ramping up the dog and pony shows as his re-election campaign nears the final stretch. This week he’s sending surrogates around the country during “Infrastructure Week” to hype the hundreds of billions of dollars he’s pumped into roads, clean energy, drinking water and broadband projects.

As Politico reported, the hope is that Americans will be convinced that Biden’s efforts are making their lives better.

Perhaps in terms of better roads. But when it comes to America’s financial infrastructure, Biden’s hit a pothole.

All the infrastructure cheerleading can’t drown out the fact that homeownership is out of reach for far too many Americans, and rising rents are adding to the pain of trying to get by in this country.

As the New York Post reported, the affordability crisis is in the spotlight this campaign season. Housing affordability has reached some of the most abysmal levels on record. Nationally, median list prices are up 28% since January 2021, and the home price-to-income ratio is at a record high of nearly 6-to-1, up from a ratio of 4.1-to-1 as recently as 2019.

Nearly half of all renters in the nation spend more than 30% of their income and a quarter spend more than 50% on rent each month, according to U.S. Census data. How can anyone save up for a down payment on a home with that rental burden? They can’t.

“Homeownership has for many years been an important part of the American dream, and if people feel like that’s slipping out of reach, we’re going to see that reflected in their attitudes about the election,” said® Chief Economist Danielle Hale.

It’s not just the home prices, it’s home stock — the inventory isn’t where it needs to be.

This is what voters have top of mind, along with high prices on food and household goods, and it explains why the president’s approval rating is subterranean.

When it comes to working Americans, Biden can’t seem to read the room. This is especially true in the optics for his fundraiser next month.

Biden’s campaign has tapped former President Obama, George Clooney and Julia Roberts for a star-studded fundraising bash in Los Angeles, according to a campaign official.

Clooney and Roberts will participate in a contest that will be run across social media, digital ads, emails and texts. The pair will also be featured in social media posts and digital ads and will sign emails and text messages to President Biden’s supporters, the official added.

If we’re talking about Biden’s supporters in Hollywood and other progressive enclaves, many on the East Coast, it’s a shoo-in. Stars with multiple homes and well-heeled elites with private jets won’t heckle Biden over inflation and housing prices.

Will “star-studded” endorsements win over working voters? Pre-pandemic, possibly. But with the financial beating middle and working-class families have taken over the past few years, the divide between the haves and have-nots is deeply felt.

Biden can raise a ton of campaign cash from big-bucks donors at these shindigs. Raising his approval rating with the American people is another story.


Editorial cartoon by Steve Kelley (Creators Syndicate)
Editorial cartoon by Steve Kelley (Creators Syndicate)

Source link


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