From the Left



Like Trump, Biden would be a right-wing president

Ted Rall on

What would President Joe Biden do? His supporters are making it hard to read the tealeaves.

They say he'd appoint a great Cabinet. But he won't tell us who would be in it.

They say he'd be progressive. Yet his "unity platform" doesn't include a single major policy position endorsed by Sen. Bernie Sanders.

As they warn in those investment company ads, past performance is no guarantee of future returns. But there's a reason Wall Street analysts pour over historical data: Past performance is a strong indicator of what a stock will do next. So if you want to know what kind of president Biden would be, it's smart to study his record, which has been consistent over 44 years in public office.

With a few exceptions, Biden has always positioned himself either at the center or to the right of the ideological 50-yard line of his party. When he has written or sponsored legislation with broad implications, such as the 1994 crime bill and the USA Patriot Act, it has been so reactionary that it could easily have been authored by a right-wing Republican. Biden has never been responsible for a major law that could be described as liberal.

It's impossible to know what was in Joe Biden's heart as he considered policy decisions throughout his four decades in Washington. All we know is what he actually did. There were few acts of foresight, much less courage. Even when the choice between right and wrong was clear to many others, Biden was on the wrong side of history.


Could this conservative Democrat, age 78, suddenly reverse course and turn into a progressive? Anything is possible. But it isn't likely.

I was 12 years old in 1975, but I remember how people felt about court-ordered busing in order to desegregate public schools. Racists were against it; anti-racists were for it.

Biden was against it. He was so against it that he cosponsored an amendment against busing with Sen. Jesse Helms, the Republican far-right segregationist. Biden said in what ought to have been a career-killing rant: "What it says is, in order for your child with curly black hair, brown eyes and dark skin to be able to learn anything, he needs to sit next to my blond-haired, blue-eyed son. That's racist! Who the hell do we think we are, that the only way a black man or woman can learn is if they rub shoulders with my white child?"

He has never apologized.


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