Being Right: Biden’s Attack on ‘MAGA Republicans’ is a Shameless Hit Job on His Political Opponents

Last Thursday night, President Joe Biden took to an ominously lit Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pa. to deliver an address regarding what he billed the “Battle for the Soul of the Nation.” During the roughly 25 minutes that the U.S. president huffed and puffed about “hope and unity,” Biden worked himself into a tizzy about whom he perceives to be his greatest enemy: his fellow countrymen.

“Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our Republic,” Biden alleged. Painting a dim portrait of his opponents, Biden complained that MAGA Republicans “do not respect the Constitution,” nor do they “believe in the rule of law.” Per the president, his enemies “[fan] the flames of political violence,” “embrace anger,” “thrive on chaos” and “live in the shadow of lies.”

While many Democratic politicians prefer to cloak their disdain for Republican voters with carefully chosen euphemisms, Biden left no such ambiguity. Put simply, his comments make Hillary Clinton’s “basket of deplorables” remarks feel gentle and flattering by comparison. But we shouldn’t be surprised.

Last Thursday’s speech is the culmination of an emboldened government now increasingly weaponized against its own citizens. The fact that Biden can now openly and brazenly direct his ire toward the common Republican voter, rather than a particular politician or thought leader, speaks volumes about how we’ve gotten to this point.

The Philadelphia tirade is especially significant in the context of the political trends and events that undergird its acerbity. Take, for example, a 2021 Rasmussen poll revealing that, in the minds of the Democrats polled, the greatest threats to the nation were their fellow countrymen: first, Trump supporters, and second, those who had not received a COVID-19 vaccine.

What we are observing is a careful and deliberate shift in rhetoric. What once was free speech became “hate speech,” and finally evolved into “stochastic terrorism.” It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand why this rhetorical leap was made. To Biden and his allies, political opponents are now viewed as threats to national security—perhaps ones warranting a forceful response.

We live in an era during which a former Republican president’s home can be raided by a three-letter-agency over a documents dispute, while at the same time, a growing chorus of whistleblowers suggest that agents were dissuaded by higher-ups from investigating the president’s inarguably criminal son, Hunter Biden.

Examples abound: per the New York Post, Attorney General Merrick Garland made perfectly clear to parents at school board meetings that they would be met with the brunt of the Department of Justice’s investigative efforts. Meanwhile, barely a year earlier (according to the Washington Free Beacon), the future vice president actively shilled for a Minnesota bail fund at the same time as brutal riots caused over $2 billion in damage, as estimated by a Property Claim Services report.

So, when conservatives talk about the weaponization of the government against them, it is no longer a hypothetical.

Biden’s defenders will suggest that the president does not condemn the average Republican, but rather, sought to target a separate, extremist strain of Republican politics. This may be a neat way to obfuscate one’s view on the subject, but it’s a claim that just doesn’t hold water.

 In truth, many of the positions that Biden takes to be particularly extreme— that is, the “MAGA Republican” positions on immigration, voting rights and the criminal justice system—are barely distinguishable from the views of 1990s Democrats. Heck, as an Honest Elections Project poll indicated last year, the “MAGA Republican” stance on voter ID is one shared by a vast majority of Americans across racial lines.

Other positions Biden denounces as being newly extreme or radical are ones that have been held by the conservative movement for decades; since when did being pro-life become an extreme, “MAGA Republican” position and not just a standard, conservative one?

Thus, when Biden postures about having been “able to work with these mainstream Republicans,” it rings hollow. The Daily Wire’s Michael Knowles hit the nail on the head when he argued, “As a practical matter, all Republicans are ‘MAGA Republicans.’” By categorizing perfectly mainstream, conservative opinions as “extremist” or even “violent,” Biden illustrates how fundamentally unserious he is about working with us, or even understanding our positions, in any meaningful capacity.

Some of the more glib members of the left might take the conservative outcry to Biden’s speech to mean we’re scared of the color red, or something. That may be fine for them, but in reality, conservatives all know that Biden’s speech was a shameless attack on every last one of us, only punctuated by the fittingly blood-red aesthetic selected for the background.