With malice toward quite a few.



FOX News

New York Times columnist Bret Stephens rips Biden for treating Republicans like ‘deplorables,’ ‘enemy within’
Brian Flood


New York Times opinion columnist Bret Stephens slammed President Biden’s widely-criticized recent speech for painting “millions of voters as deplorables while again branding Democrats as the party of sanctimony and condescension,” in a scathing takedown.

Biden continues to push divisive ‘MAGA Republican’ rhetoric
Biden shocked viewers last Thursday with a campaign-style speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, complete with a glowing “blood red” background that was heavily criticized for making the president look like some sort of evil dictator. But Biden’s rhetoric was also polarizing, as he aimed to frame the state of U.S. politics as a battle between “equality and democracy” and a GOP allegedly assaulting those principles – and that is what Stephens focused on.

Stephens began the piece titled, “With Malice Toward Quite a Few,” by noting that Abraham Lincoln offered an “olive branch to a South on the eve of the Civil War” and later “promised malice toward none after the war left 620,000 dead” during two much-revered speeches.


“Biden’s speech in Philadelphia last week bears no resemblance to either address,” Stephens wrote. “Biden has decided the best way to seek partisan advantage is to treat tens of millions of Americans as the enemy within.”

The Times columnist added, “How can an American president go wrong in identifying threats to democracy? Biden offered a master class.”

Stephens – a frequent critic of former President Trump – scolded Biden for saying “MAGA Republicans… represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our Republic,” noting that he lumped in Americans who oppose abortion and gay marriage with those who celebrated the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

“In other words, Biden claimed to distinguish MAGA Republicans from mainstream ones and then proceeded to conflate them. That may resonate with partisan Democrats who have never seen a conservative they didn’t consider a bigot or a fool. But it gives the lie to the idea that dismantling MAGA Republicanism is the prime objective of the president or his party,” Stephens wrote before moving on to the “transparently partisan purposes” of Biden’s speech.

Stephens objected to pro-Democratic groups that have shelled out cash to “help nominate the Trumpiest candidates in Republican primaries, on the theory that they will be easier to beat in November,” which helped defeat Michigan Rep. Peter Meijer – who voted for Donald Trump’s impeachment last year – in a GOP primary.


President Biden’s campaign-style speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia last week generated criticism for both the tone and visuals. AP Photo/Evan Vucci
President Biden’s campaign-style speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia last week generated criticism for both the tone and visuals. AP Photo/Evan Vucci
© AP Photo/Evan Vucci
“Is that smart as hardball politics? Maybe. But Biden could have spared us the pieties about timeless American values. As far as I can tell, he has yet to say a word in public against the ad buys, much less tried to stop them. Instead, his speech makes a neat bookend to a strategy of promoting MAGA extremists so they can be denounced as MAGA extremists,” Stephens wrote.

“Some liberals took a similar approach in 2016, all but rooting for Trump to win the nomination on the theory that he’d be Hillary Clinton’s weakest opponent,” he continued. “Look how that worked out.”

Stephens wasn’t finished shredding Biden and wrote the “crassest part” was when the president’s address became a “campaign rally for Democratic priorities such as prescription-drug benefits and the ‘clean energy future.’”

“When a president makes the implicit claim that to be a small-d democrat one must today be a big-D Democrat he advances the interests of neither his party nor the country. He only gratuitously insults millions of voters as deplorables while again branding Democrats as the party of sanctimony and condescension,” Stephens wrote. “I write this as someone who has long thought that Trump represents a unique threat to democracy.”

The Times columnist then reminded readers why he dislikes Trump so much before concluding the column with a tip for Biden.

“The gravest threat American democracy faces today isn’t the Republican Party, MAGA or otherwise. It’s Trump. He’s one man, sinister but also buffoonish. To defeat him, the core task is to make him seem small, very small. Biden’s misbegotten speech did precisely the opposite,” Stephens wrote. “The next time Biden talks about democracy, he should remember Lincoln’s other exhortation: charity for all.”


About kommonsentsjane

Enjoys sports and all kinds of music, especially dance music. Playing the keyboard and piano are favorites. Family and friends are very important.
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