Supporters of President Joe Biden’s massive $3.5 trillion spending package are growing increasingly worried that it won’t pass, with activists going to so far as to accost Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema this weekend in a public bathroom over her opposition to it.
Quinn Hillyer is a columnist for the Washington Examiner, and in a piece put out last Friday, he argued that the overwrought response “is providing a sad case study of psychosis.”
As an example, Hillyer pointed to remarks made by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Jon Meacham during a Friday appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
Historian warns of an existential crisis if bill fails to pass
The columnist point out that Meacham expressed disappointment in how the president and other prominent Democrats were not resorting to apocalyptic rhetoric when it came to pushing the legislation.
Despite insisting he didn’t “want to be hyperbolic,” Meacham declared that Democrats “right now have democracy with a lower-case ‘d’ in their hands.”
He added that Biden “has promised the American people, insofar as any human being can promise, that constitutional republic, that this democracy, can deliver for them,” with failure making it impossible to show “that the system works.”
Hillyer noted that this was followed by an attempt to somehow link the spending bill with suspicions among Trump supporters about last year’s presidential election.
“Meacham made it sound as if, just by virtue of opposing Trump, Biden deserved to have his own radical agenda passed,” Hillyer observed.
Democrats said to have “the fate of the Constitution” in their hands
After portraying the matter as an existential crisis, Meacham used the desperate picture to encourage Democrats to compromise if need be.
“If you’re a progressive Democrat, you’re thinking, ‘Wait a minute, this whole other party is just this implacably opposed illiberal, nonreasoning force,” he said.
“Why do we have to give in? Why do we have to compromise on everything?’ Well, in this case, history and experience have put the fate of the Constitution in your hands. And so that’s why. This is not about politics. This is not a fiscal cliff. This might be a constitutional cliff.”
Hillyer concluded by stressing that none of this deserves to be taken seriously, writing that “if there’s a Pulitzer Prize for hyperventilation and hyperbole, Meacham will win it, hands down.”