The Biden-Harris Team’s Immense Policy Inconsistencies

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Understanding Presidential candidate’s positions on critically important and relevant issues/topics is essential to any informed voter in making their decision between politicians, but that is exactly the opposite of what we have received from the Biden Campaign.  With topics ranging from police funding, to Supreme Court-packing, to the Green New Deal, to taxes, there is little to no consistency with policy and position from the Biden-Harris team.  An informed voter should know exactly what type of policies and actions a candidate for president would take on, not be left in confusion, guessing which side of issues they would side with.  The Biden-Harris Campaign has repeatedly held conflicting positions on various critically important political topics, and their inability to effectively communicate a consistent message for even a singular issue could prove to be damaging to a fully functioning democracy.   

Defunding the Police

Does Joe-Biden want to defund the police?  While the apparent answer is no, there seem to be some conflicting messages coming from the former Vice President.  “But do we agree that we can redirect some of the [police] budget?”  “Yes, absolutely.”  If we were to take Joe Biden’s word on his own policies, we would come away thinking that he wants to defund the police, as when you ‘redirect’ money, you are taking money away from the initial source.  His Rapid Response Director Andrew Bates then said: “As his criminal justice proposal made clear months ago, Vice President Biden does not believe that police should be defunded.”  So, who should we believe:  The candidate running for president or his spokesperson?  Is that a question a voter should have to ask themselves?  Unlike many high-profile news outlets in 2020, I intend on including all relevant information, not just tiny quotes that fit a narrative.  Joe Biden has repeatedly claimed to not support defunding the police since July of this year (2020).  It is with this fact that calls into question his competence, and/or his willingness to say ‘whatever is needed’ to gain votes.  Why would Joe Biden immediately agree to divert funds from the police if he does not believe in doing that?  Perhaps we could grant a pass on him making a few mistakes, but as we will see, inconsistent policy proposals itself is one of the few consistencies within the Biden campaign.  

How about Vice Presidential Candidate Kamala Harris, how does she feel about ‘defunding the police’?  “We’ve got to re-examine what we’re doing with American taxpayer dollars and ask the question: are we getting the right return on our investment? Are we actually creating healthy and safe communities…  That’s a legitimate conversation and it requires a really critical evaluation. I applaud Eric Garcetti for doing what he’s done.”  What did the mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, do that Harris is referring to?  The decision Garcetti made was to cut $150 million from the budget of the LAPD.  Harris also said earlier in the year that “It is status quo thinking to believe that putting more police on the streets creates more safety.  That’s wrong.  It’s just wrong.”  Similarly to Joe Biden’s case, why are we unable to get a consistent answer from Harris and her spokeswoman?  Kamala Harris’ press secretary Sabrina Singh said: “Joe Biden and Kamala Harris do not support defunding the police, and it is a lie to suggest otherwise…. Throughout her career, Sen. Harris has supported increasing funding to police departments and boosting funding for community policing.”  Perhaps the Biden campaign should have a meeting to settle their position, or at least public position, on certain issues. 

The Green New Deal

The Green New Deal, sponsored by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, has always been seen as a ‘far-left’ plan, partly as a result of experts estimating it would cost between $51 and $93 trillion from 2020 to 2029, or an estimated $600,000 per household [6].  Though this is an estimation, as the Green New Deal does not list policies, but rather goals/ideas, the overall cost of implementing policies that back the listed goals would still prove to be highly expensive.  So, where does the Biden-Harris team stand on the GND?  The answer to that question depends entirely on where you look, and who you listen to.  Considering Biden is leading in polls to become the next president of the United States, it would be expected that he would be the source of accurate policies his administration would support, but that seems to be not true with a wide variety of topics, and the Green New Deal is no exception.  

In 2019, Joe Biden named Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to lead his ‘climate task force’ [7].  If we rewind just a few sentences, it appears that Cortez was one of two lead sponsors for the Green New Deal.  Therefore, by putting Cortez in charge of the ‘climate task force’, you would be theoretically signing up for her climate positions, which just happen to be the GND.  During the first Presidential debate, Biden seemed to defend the GND at first, saying: “The Green New Deal will pay for itself as we move forward.”  Chris Wallace, the moderator of the debate then inserted himself, asking Biden if he supports the Green New Deal.  “No, I don’t support the Green New Deal.”  To provide full context, Biden mentioned multiple times a ‘Biden Plan’ as an alternative to the GND, but what would that look like?  Well, according to JoeBiden.com, “Biden Believes the Green New Deal is a crucial framework for meeting the climate challenges we face [8].”

Despite being asked directly by the moderator to clarify the Biden-Harris position on the Green New Deal, Kamala Harris did not even mention the word.  So, what is the Biden-Harris’s position on the Green New Deal, a set of goals that would cost several tens of trillions of dollars to achieve with policy?  Does Biden know his own opinion on the GND?  Or, is he trying to downplay his support for it out of hope to seem more moderate?  Or, has he completely changed his mind on the topic, and the administrators of his website forgot to update his climate-plan page?  Perhaps he is nervous to admit his support for the GND, or highly similar plans directly inspired by the GND, because the idea of spending tens of trillions of dollars after one of the largest economic crashes in US history might be off-putting to the average voter.  

Taxes

Joe Biden continues to maintain that he will not raise taxes for everyone, but rather that he intends on only raising taxes for individuals making more than $400,000.  While this fact remains fairly consistent, the question of whether or not the average person will get a raise in taxes is not.  Presidential candidate Joe Biden and his Vice-Presidential candidate Kamala Harris have both repeatedly stated that they intend on repealing the Trump tax cuts.  In the Vice-Presidential debate, Harris stated: “On day one, Joe Biden will repeal that tax bill.  He’ll get rid of it.”  Just 2-3 minutes later, Harris responded to Vice President Pence, who claimed that “on day one, Joe Biden’s going to raise your taxes,” by saying, “That’s not what I said.” Not only was that what she said, but those were also the exact words she had used.  The Trump tax cuts gave the middle 60% earning families a 1.7% increase in their after-tax income per year [3] and reduced the average individual’s tax-costs by over a thousand dollars yearly, even according to a source critical of the plan [4].  By “repealing that tax bill” like Harris stated, or more specifically as Biden himself said, by “eliminat[ing] the Trump tax cuts,” taxes would increase for all income ranges.  This is simply a fact of life, when you eliminate a plan that gave tax cuts to all income groups, you are effectively raising taxes.  Not only would Biden increase taxes by repealing the Trump tax cuts, but his tax plan is estimated to result in a GDP decrease of 1.47%, an average wage rate decrease of 1.04%, and an after-tax income decrease of 1% on average for all taxpayers in 2021, a 1.7% decrease in 2030, and a long term decrease of 2.5% [5].  Needless to say, when Biden says that taxes will not be raised on anyone making more than $400,000/year, he is misleading you

‘Packing’ the Supreme Court

One of the many concerns held by those on the right is the possibility for a democratic held executive and senate to ‘pack’ the Supreme Court, after various calls for such actions have been made in response to President Trump nominating Judge Amy Coney Barret to the court.  While the generally accepted number of Justices on the Supreme Court has been 9, there is no set number listed in the Constitution.  Because of this, the ability to ‘pack’ the Supreme Court is made possible when a party who controls both the senate and presidency nominates and confirms new Justices to the court, raising the number of judges.  The reason why Democrats in Congress have raised the idea of ‘packing’ the supreme court, including Vice Presidential nominee Kamala Harris, who said “[She is] open to increasing the numbers on the Supreme Court.”, is because if judge Amy Coney Barret were to be confirmed to the Supreme Court by the Senate, that would give conservatives a ‘supermajority’ on the court, or 6 out of the 9 judges.  The idea of Conservatives having any majority on the Supreme Court is asphyxiating enough to most democrats, but a supermajority?  This is unacceptable.  The only solution?  Arbitrarily add Justices to the court for no reason other than to diminish and weaken the conservative majority.

If that sounds like the complete politicization and destruction of all faith in the 3rd branch of the American Government, you may agree with roughly 68% of other Americans [2].  So, most importantly, how does the Biden-Harris team view ‘packing’ the Supreme Court?  As I mentioned earlier, Harris has already expressed her support for the idea before she knew it would even matter.  In an article posted on May 31 of 2019, Kamala Harris said in response to ‘packing’ the Supreme Court: “I think it’s a conversation that we need to have.  I am open to increasing the numbers on the Supreme Court.” [1] Despite previously showing her support for the idea, Harris openly refused to answer a question posed to her 2 or 3 times during the Vice-Presidential debate by VP Mike Pence.  “… If somehow you win this election, [are you] going to pack the Supreme Court to get your way?”Pence asked.  Rather than answering the question, Harris proceeded to cite Abraham Lincoln’s inability to nominate a Justice before an election.  Pence reinforced the question, asking again: “People are voting right now. They’d like to know if you and Joe Biden are going to pack the Supreme Court of you don’t get your way in this nomination.”  Harris refuses to answer the question a second time, and instead states that President Trump has not appointed any black judges to the Court of Appeals for lifetime positions.  

What about Joe Biden?  He is, after all, the candidate running for president of the United States, so surely, he has an answer for us as to whether or not his administration intends on fundamentally obliterating the 3rd branch of government?  Not only did former Vice President Biden say, “I’m not going to answer the question” in response to President Trump asking about the packing issue during the first Presidential debate, but he has now stated: “They’ll know my opinion on court-packing when the election is over,” citing the fact that “…The moment [he] answers that question, the headline in every one of your papers will be the answer to that question.”  Perhaps Joe is having an episode relating to old age and dementia, but that is exactly what a presidential candidate is intended to do: List policies and answer questions about their platform for the country.  Not only has Joe Biden dodged the question completely, several times in fact, but he is now openly saying that you must vote for him to find out whether or not he will fundamentally destroy the faith behind the American Court systems.  Let’s take it a step further, Joe Biden now has said that voters do not even deserve to know what his position on this topic is.  When asked about packing the court, the interviewer stated: “Well sir, don’t the voters deserve to know?”  To which Biden responded by saying, “No, they don’t deserve [to know].”  Perhaps this is one of the few policies that the Biden-Harris team is now quite clear on: They fully intend to pack the Supreme Court of the United States.  If not, then why would they have trouble stating so, considering the supermajority of the public would agree with them?  

Why Does it Matter?

​Though undecided voters intend on voting for the candidate who they feel best suits the job based on policy and positions, the Biden-Harris team has been consistently inconsistent in their messaging and have provided few proposals that have not been met with repeated opposition from their own mouths.  Whether it be eliminating the integrity and faith in the 3rd branch of government, launching programs that would cost tens of trillions of dollars over the next decade, decreasing income and increasing taxes for all income brackets, and slashing funding to our countries law enforcement agencies, the American people deserve to know what exactly the next potential president and vice president of the United States intend on achieving in office.  With critical issues that could and would affect most Americans in some way, and fundamentally re-shape the American government on the table for discussion, the people don’t only deserve an accurate and consistent message from Presidential candidates:  They are owed one.  Unfortunately, it seems as if Joe Biden and Kamala Harris do not intent on fulfilling that obligation to the American people, leaving the decision to you.  “The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all,” and with a platform as inconsistent and undefinable as Biden’s, ignorance is supplementary to every vote cast for him, regardless of the voter’s willingness to do what they believe is right.


Referenced Sources:

[1] https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/31/politics/democrats-supreme-court-packing-politics/index.html
[2] https://www.forbes.com/sites/joewalsh/2020/09/25/americans-support-delaying-ginsburg-replacement-but-oppose-court-packing-poll-finds/#2f68834b4e49
[3] https://www.thebalance.com/trump-s-tax-plan-how-it-affects-you-4113968
[4] https://time.com/5570679/trump-tax-cuts/
[5] https://taxfoundation.org/joe-biden-tax-plan-2020/
[6] https://www.foxbusiness.com/politics/alexandria-ocasio-cortezs-green-new-deal-could-cost-93-trillion-group- says 
[7] https://insideclimatenews.org/news/13052020/biden-ocasio-cortez-kerry-climate-task-force  
[8] https://joebiden.com/climate-plan/