To hear congressional Democrats and their corporate media allies tell the tale, the impeachment and conviction of former president Donald John Trump (they always use the “John” when they talk about impeachment) is vital to the health and survival of the republic. They argue that these measures are needed to send a message to future would-be despots in the Oval Office that there is accountability. Whatever you make of that, I happen to think it’s a ludicrous pile of hogwash. There is one person with no opinion, however, and that would be the current president.
Joe Biden and his White House team refuse to say whether Trump should be convicted. Every Democrat in the country, it seems, supports the impeachment, yet the self-proclaimed leader of the Democratic Party isn’t sure? The excuse given by the White House is that this is a decision for senators and Biden is no longer in the Senate. But so what? Biden wasn’t in the Senate in January of 2020, when he said Congress had “no choice” but to impeach Trump.
Suddenly, now that Biden is president he cannot weigh in on what Democrats claim is one of the most pressing political issues in the nation? As with everything Biden does or has ever done, the answer lies in politics. But even from a political perspective, this evasion seems particularly obsequious. I mean, come on, man, we all know what his actual opinion is. He’s not the sole Democrat in all the land against conviction. Is he really winning over Trump voters by refusing to profess an opinion here?
Biden would appear to be operating under his patented “do no harm” political philosophy, the one that served him so well in the basement during his campaign. When talk of impeachment first began after the Capitol riots, some Republicans and conservative pundits saw an opportunity for Biden to bring about unity by opposing the measure. That might have been pie in the sky stuff, but Biden didn’t take the bait. Instead, in classic Biden fashion, he says nothing.
This is a pattern with the president. On opening schools, he is similarly feckless. His own Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advisers say they can open, and Biden hems and haws in awe of the teachers unions. Had Trump defied his own experts in such a way, it would have been a two-week scandal with its own CNN theme music. Now that Biden is president things are more nuanced, you see? Political considerations matter right alongside science. We could have used some of that sentiment last year.
The problem with Biden refusing to tell us what he actually thinks about these important issues is that it strongly suggests he is not the one making the decisions. Like his former boss, Barack Obama, Biden likes to lead from behind. But behind whom, exactly? Who is deciding what his positions on impeachment and schools are? Say what you will about Trump, but we always knew his opinion. And it was his opinion, not a focus-group position delivered to him by unknown lackeys in mediocre suits.
Biden was elected president of the United States. He claims it is a job he wanted. It is a leadership position, yet he refuses to lead. Is this impeachment as important and vital as Democrats not named Joe Biden claim? It’s kind of hard to take those claims seriously when the leader of the party can’t be bothered to comment.
It’s time for Sleepy Joe to take a stand on impeachment. It is an issue that deeply divides the country. One cannot create unity by simply avoiding hard or uncomfortable positions, but we have to accept that this is exactly who we elected. We elected a smiley grandpa who doesn’t want to make trouble.
One of the biggest fears that opponents of Biden had throughout his candidacy was that he would not be making the decisions, that he would be a prop, an extra in his own administration who looks nice behind the desk. Three weeks into his administration, it is starting to look like those predictions were right. Come on, Joe. Tell us what you really think, man. We’d like to know.