In a Labor Day speech, President Joe Biden took the opportunity to discuss the state of the nation’s job market and infrastructure. Without mentioning former President Donald Trump by name, President Biden discussed what he perceived as the shortcomings of his predecessor’s economic policies in contrast to his own achievements.
“The Guy Who Held This Job Before”
During his recent Labor Day speech in Philadelphia, President Biden said, “The guy who held this job before me was just one of two presidents in history … who left office with fewer jobs in America than when he got elected to office”
He then compared “The guy who held this job before” to Herbert Hoover, the only other President in history to leave office with fewer jobs due to the Great Depression.
Biden did not hesitate to draw attention to the stark contrast between his administration and the previous one, although he did not mention Trump directly.
The President also celebrated a bipartisan infrastructure deal that he deemed a significant achievement.
“He Didn’t Build a Damn Thing”
Biden said, “Guess what? The great real estate builder, the last guy, he didn’t build a damn thing. Under my predecessor, Infrastructure Week became a punchline.
On my watch, infrastructure has been a decade, and it’s a headline.” While President Biden avoided using Trump’s name, it was clear to the audience who he was referring to when he mentioned “the last guy.”
The crowd’s reactions, including some boos, seemed to confirm the intended target of his remarks.
One of President Biden’s key talking points was job outsourcing. He contrasted his own approach and said, “When the last guy was here, we were shipping jobs to China. Now we’re bringing jobs home from China.”
Biden also criticized Trump’s pension policies, stating, “When the last guy was here, your pensions were at risk. We helped save millions of pensions with your help. When the last guy was here, he looked at the world from Park Avenue. I look at it from Scranton, Pennsylvania, I look at it from Claymont, Delaware.”
Steven Cheung, a spokesperson for Trump’s campaign, countered these claims by stating, “President Trump produced a booming economic recovery, and record low unemployment for African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans and women.”
Cheung also said, “Joe Biden is the destroyer of America’s jobs and continues to fuel runaway inflation with reckless big government spending. President Trump’s vision for America’s economic revival is lower taxes, bigger paychecks and more jobs for American workers.”
No Clear Winner
Despite the differences in their approaches, recent polls suggest a hypothetical 2024 rematch between Biden and Trump would be highly competitive, with both candidates holding substantial leads over their primary rivals.
President Biden’s Labor Day speech primarily focused on economic matters and issues directly affecting everyday Americans.
However, he did reuse some of his 2020 campaign rhetoric to underscore the accomplishments he believes he has achieved during his first term.
Biden also made a point to argue against the idea that America was struggling and said, “All I hear from my friends on the other side is what they say is wrong with America. They keep telling us America’s failing. They’re wrong. I’ve got news for them: America has the strongest economy in the world right now, today.”
However, reactions to this speech seem varied, with many users commenting on different opinions.
One X user said, “Why does he lie to the American public like that he only had 3 million new jobs created. The rest were regain jobs that were lost due to the pandemic he didn’t create s***.”
Another claimed the speech was a lie and commented, “It’s kind of funny, despite Biden repeating this lie over and over again, Trump’s rise in the polls continues.
Trump “lost jobs” because of the COVID shutdowns. Biden “gained jobs” because those ended, and people slowly went back to work after the freebies ran out.”
However, Biden still has many supporters, with one X user commenting, “How could anyone not say Joe Biden is the best President in American history? and, he is not even finished with his first term. He is out there, getting things done, not campaigning. He does that on the side, when he has time. Trump used his whole Presidency to campaign…and he lost! I guess those rallies weren’t as crowded as he said!”
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