Support The Bulwark and subscribe today.
  Join Now

Biden’s Turn-Things-Around Strategy

The change in fortune began when the Democrats started to do something that I’ve been calling for for a while.
August 4, 2022
A Sneaky Good Week For Democrats | Not My Party with Tim Miller

[Editor’s note: Watch Not My Party every week on Snapchat.]

Tim Miller: Don’t look now but President Biden and the Dems are having a pretty good summer.

Larry David (on Curb Your Enthusiasm): Pretty, pretty good.

Miller: This is “Not My Party,” brought to you by The Bulwark. Last year around this time, when I had a lot more hair, we were talking about the Hot Joe Summer.

Cat in the Hat (Mike Myers in Dr. Seuss’ The Cat in the Hat): Oh yeah!

Miller: COVID was on the wane, POTUS’s poll numbers were sky-high, everything seemed to be coming up Joe—and right after that, it all went to sh**.

Pikachu (in Pokémon Detective Pikachu): Way to go, Tim.

Miller: Afghanistan. Inflation.

Creepy robo-voiced fake AOC: Human infrastructure.

Miller: More inflation. Whispers that he’s too old for the job. Nothing went his way.

Frank the Pug (from Men in Black II): Ouch.

Miller: For the last few weeks that’s begun to change, and even these guys have noticed.

Bret Baier: This has been a couple of good weeks for the president.

Miller: The turn in fortune began when the Democrats started to do something that I’ve been calling for for a while: Put popular sh** up for a vote, and dare Republicans to oppose it.

Tempus (Lane Davies on Lois & Clark): Go ahead, make my days.

Miller: The House did just that when they voted to codify one of the pro-gay-marriage Supreme Court rulings.

Sean Patrick Maloney: Every American, despite their race or their sexuality, has the freedom to marry the person they love.

Waylon Smithers (on The Simpsons): An excellent LGBT policy.

Miller: 47 Republicans supported, 157 opposed.

Smithers: All the conservative views conflict with my choice of lifestyle.

Miller: As a result, now Senate Republicans will face a vote over whether they will protect marriages like mine in the year of our Lord 2022.

Dan Fouts (in The Waterboy): They better because they suck.

Miller: And if they scrounge up 10 Republican votes, then Biden will get to seal the deal on gay marriage. In the meantime Biden signed the CHIPS Act—

Man in a seersucker suit: We have a shortage of chips and that shortage is about to end.

Steve Smith (on American Dad): Why am I so hungry?

Miller: —a sneaky-important bill which will increase U.S. manufacturing and give us protection if China acts on its threat to invade Taiwan, the world’s biggest exporter by far of high-end semiconductors. These are critical components to your phone, laptop, car, and more that we need to be able to make here.

Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell in Anchorman): Kind of a big deal.

Miller: Here’s the Democratic Senate candidate in Ohio, Tim Ryan, making the case.

Tim Ryan: My God, if we can’t agree on this, what in the hell are we gonna agree on? Rebuilding the manufacturing base. Paying jobs. Union construction. Outcompeting China. Come on!

BMO (on Adventure Time with Finn and Jake): Chips, chips, chips.

Don (on Regular Show): I’m sensing some tension, bro.

Miller: Next, it was the Democrats who pulled a fast one on Cocaine Mitch for once. McConnell thought he had a gentleman’s agreement to support the CHIPS Act in exchange for killing the rest of the Biden domestic agenda.

Animated black-and-white turtle Mitch McConnell: And don’t forget.

Miller: Nope. This week Joe Manchin and Chuck Schumer cut a new deal on the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, which should pass with all 50 Democratic Senate votes because it’s the rare annual budget-focused bill that doesn’t require 60 to break filibuster.

“Tree” (unidentified actor on The Wire): Think you got played.

Mitch McConnell puppet (from Let’s Be Real): What, no? What is this?

Miller: And the details are pretty good if you ask me. It creates a minimum corporate tax of 15 percent so companies can’t avoid their tax bill. It cuts the loophole that allows hedge-fund bros to get taxed at a lower rate than other rich people. Cuts prescription drug prices. And uses all that revenue to invest $300 billion to combat climate change. Finally uses another $300 billion to cut the deficit.

Speckle (from Tuca & Bertie): Very nice.

Miller: Be still my climate-change-believing deficit-hawk heart. This all comes after the first federal gun-control bill in thirty years that increased background checks for young gun buyers and keeps firearms away from domestic-violence offenders. Finally, the cherry on top. The U.S. military rained Hellfire missiles down on Ayman Al-Zawahiri. The last leading member of al Qaeda responsible for 9/11.

Lauren Durand (Raychel Diane Weiner on Pure Genius): Never forget.

Miller: We’ve been tracking this mofo down for twenty years and he finally stuck his neck out on the balcony for a little fresh air.

Lisa (in Team America: World Police): Terrorize this.

Owen Wilson: Wow.

Hayley Smith (on American Dad): What does all this mean?

Miller: Here’s the question that the pundits are obsessed with.

Voiceover: How it could impact the midterms.

TV host: How could that impact the midterms?

News anchor: What does this mean for the midterms?

Miller: Who knows and who cares? Too often we fall in this trap of needing to criticize, stuck in a tunnel vision of the political implications.

Marge Simpson (on The Simpsons): How horrible.

Well, from guns to microchips to climate to deficit reduction, to offing a terrorist, Biden and Congress made some tangible progress the last few weeks. And that’s what this politics sh** is supposed to be about.

Mr. Bartosiewicz (Domenick Lombardozzi on The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel): Wouldn’t that be nice huh?

Miller: We’ll see you next week for more Not My Party.

Tim Miller

Tim Miller is The Bulwark’s writer-at-large and the author of the best-selling book Why We Did It: A Travelogue from the Republican Road to Hell. He was previously political director for Republican Voters Against Trump and communications director for Jeb Bush 2016.