Issues & Insights

Biden Will Be Haunted By The Ghost Of His Campaign Past

An Axios story over the weekend carried the headline: “Biden’s 2024 vision: Play 2020 again.” If true, that means Joe Biden will be running against himself, because the attacks he lodged against then-President Donald Trump four years ago – on the economy, on COVID, on disunity, on corruption – all look worse today.

Before COVID, for example, Biden was attacking the economy, arguing that, despite the 40-year low unemployment rate in late 2019, things were worse than ever.

In a speech Biden gave in Scranton, Pa., in October of that year, he talked about an interview he’d done with “60 Minutes,” during which he was asked about the unemployment rate, which was at that point down to 3.5%.

“I said go back to your old neighborhoods. Ask them how they’re doing, how they’re feeling. They’re in trouble,” he said.

Fast forward to today. Biden is now bragging endlessly about how the unemployment rate is just 3.7% and about all the jobs he “created.”

So, do what Biden advised. Go back to your “old neighborhoods” and ask them “how they’re doing.” What sort of answer do you think they’d give?

Real wages have been falling since Biden took office, as 40-decade-high inflation rates overwhelmed wage increases.

Our polling partner, TIPP, reports that financial stress today is higher than it was during the peak of the COVID lockdowns.

“All 36 demographic groups we analyze are in the ‘stress zone,’ prompting us to call it an epidemic,” TIPP says. TIPP also finds that 51% of Americans give Biden a failing grade (D or F) regarding his handling of the economy. Only 28% give him an A or B. Among independents, those scores are 60% and 19%, respectively.

Under Trump, the widely followed Consumer Confidence Index steadily rose, climbing almost 40%. Since 2021, it has steadily fallen.

In that same 2019 speech, Biden said “if you’re gonna restore the middle class we need to start to reward work again.”

But Biden has done more to reward people for not working than perhaps any president in history, which helps explain why millions have dropped out of the labor force altogether at a time when millions of jobs go unfilled.

Biden also insisted that much of the economy’s pre-COVID success under Trump was thanks to Obama.

“We handed him a booming economy and he blew it,” Biden said during one of the Biden-Trump debates.

But look at the record under Biden. After the pointless COVID lockdowns, the economy came roaring back. By the time Biden took office, the GDP had regained almost all the ground it had lost. The unemployment rate plummeted from its 14.7% peak in April 2020 to 6.3% by January 2021.

That was all before Biden signed his $1.9 trillion “rescue plan” into law. Since then, the economy has been wrecked by inflation, growth has been anemic (and negative in the first half of 2022), the jobs recovery slowed, and now there are growing concerns about a second recession.

If anybody blew a booming economy, it was Joseph Robinette Biden.

How about Biden’s attack line against Trump that he’d caused deep rifts in the country?

In an October 2020 speech, Biden said, “As I look across America today, I’m concerned. The country is in a dangerous place. Our trust in each other is ebbing. Hope is elusive. Too many Americans see our public life not as an arena for the mediation of our differences. Rather, they see it as an occasion for total, unrelenting partisan warfare. Instead of treating the other party as the opposition, we treat them as the enemy. This must end.”

Not only has Biden failed to end any of these problems, they’ve all deteriorated as he continually fanned the flames of hatred and animosity. The TIPP Unity Index finds that 72% say the country is divided, which is up from 61% in April 2021, when TIPP launched this index.

Meanwhile, the RealClearPolitics average of nationwide polls finds that 66.3% say the country is on the wrong track, compared with 53.8% just before all the pointless COVID lockdowns.

How about COVID? During his campaign in 2020, when the official COVID death toll hit 200,000, Biden said that “Anyone who’s responsible for that many deaths should not remain as president of the United States of America.”

But there were more COVID deaths in Biden’s first year in office than under Trump, and the total number is now well over 1 million.

Corruption? “All this talk from the president about corruption comes from the most corrupt president we’ve had in modern history. He is the definition of corruption,” Biden said at one point during his 2020 campaign.

Today, despite the studied indifference of the mainstream press, we are every day learning more about the depths of Biden’s corruption. And we’re not talking about a completely made-up claim that Trump worked with Russia to influence the 2016 election, or the multitude of other accusations against Trump that turned out to be exaggerations or lies.

We’re talking about a very credible claim that Biden took millions from foreign government officials in a bribery scheme to change U.S. policy while he was a sitting vice president. We’re talking about whistleblowers saying that Biden’s Justice Department thwarted investigations into his son’s illegal activities.

In other words, actual, honest-to-goodness, high crimes and misdemeanors.

We won’t even get into the accusations about Trump as a wannabe dictator from a guy who openly brags about defying the law to get his way.

So, we say good luck Mr. President, on running against yourself in 2024. May you both lose.

— Written by the I&I Editorial Board

We Could Use Your Help

Issues & Insights was founded by seasoned journalists of the IBD Editorials page. Our mission is to provide timely, fact-based reporting and deeply informed analysis on the news of the day -- without fear or favor.

We’re doing this on a voluntary basis because we believe in a free press, and because we aren't afraid to tell the truth, even if it means being targeted by the left. Revenue from ads on the site help, but your support will truly make a difference in keeping our mission going. If you like what you see, feel free to visit our Donations Page by clicking here. And be sure to tell your friends!

You can also subscribe to I&I: It's free!

Just enter your email address below to get started.


I & I Editorial Board

The Issues and Insights Editorial Board has decades of experience in journalism, commentary and public policy.


  • I don’t expect any difference.
    Molly Ball reported on the “well funded cabal of powerful people” in a Time magazine article laying out the campaign which made sure Biden would be President.
    It will be all the same players making the same moves, but opposition to Trump has become even more committed to keep Trump out of the Whitehouse, the DOJ bringing more and more charges, the FBI making raids on Trump and his supporters, the Koch network raising 70 million dollars to force Trump out, the networks, even Fox, going all out with negative reportage on Trump and his allies.
    I don’t expect any changes. Biden will still get positive coverage from the media.

About Issues & Insights

Issues & Insights is run by the seasoned journalists behind the legendary IBD Editorials page. Our goal is to bring our decades of combined journalism experience to help readers understand the top issues of the day. We’re doing this on a voluntary basis, because we believe the nation needs the kind of cogent, rational, data-driven, fact-based commentary that we can provide. 

We Could Use Your Help

Help us fight for honesty in journalism and against the tyranny of the left. Issues & Insights is published by the editors of what once was Investor's Business Daily's award-winning opinion pages. If you like what you see, leave a donation by clicking on donate button above. You can also set up regular donations if you like. Ad revenue helps, but your support will truly make a difference. (Please note that we are not set up as a charitable organization, so donations aren't tax deductible.) Thank you!
%d bloggers like this: