A 'dangerous dereliction': Why some Democrats are pushing Biden to focus on Trump

·2 min read
Joe Biden.
Joe Biden. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Although seemingly not #1 on his to-do list, some Democrats and progressive activists are encouraging President Biden to take a bolder stance and speak out more forcefully against former President Donald Trump, writes McClatchy.

Biden has, thus far, "largely avoided attacking Trump by name," even while criticizing individuals upholding his baseless claims of voter fraud. And while some Democrats agree with this no-name approach, others think its time Biden ups the ante ahead of the 2022 and 2024 elections, per McClatchy.

Democratic strategist Fernand Amandi argues that by not positioning Jan. 6 and its assault on American democracy as the focus of the administration, "we dilute and diminish the very existential nature of what that threat represents."

Ian Bassin, co-founder of nonprofit Protect Democracy shared a similar message, suggesting Biden will be unable to "run the same election as last time" because of what McClatchy calls "Trump-inspired efforts" to replace key state and local election officials that certified Biden's win. "If the exact same election were held in 2024, with the exact same attempts to overturn it, the people who stood up and protected us will no longer be there with them," Bassin said. He added that, although it is "reasonable" for the White House to want to avoid brawling with Trump, it is a "dangerous dereliction" to forget about the insurrectionists.

Biden's "number one priority is not protecting American democracy," argued Bassin. It's "passing an infrastructure bill and the Build Back Better plan."

That said, however, centering Trump at the center of the Democrats' campaigning might help energize their base, said Sarah Longwell, an anti-Trump Republican strategist.

"That is a recipe for juicing Democratic turnout," Longwell told McClatchy. "It's the one thing that really unifies their coalition, is opposition to Donald Trump."

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