President Joe Biden needs to “convey his vision of where America is going” in his speech to a joint session of Congress, according to a former Maryland congressman.
Biden is scheduled to deliver the speech on Wednesday evening at 9:00 p.m. EST. Biden has been in office for about 100 days and has already faced a litany of challenges ranging from the coronavirus pandemic, mass protests against police misconduct, problems at the southern border, and political fights over proposals to make pervasive infrastructure improvements and raise taxes.
“I think he has a very good plan to first control the virus and then rebuild the country. And I think he has to explain to people what he means by that,” Albert Wynn, a Democrat, who served in the House of Representatives from 1993-2008, told Maryland Reporter.com on Tuesday.
Wynn added: “That it is not just like it used to be in the 90s. But a different kind of country with different priorities. Like health care and childcare and why that is important.”
Wynn said Biden should target his message to Americans who are the most economically vulnerable.
“I think he has to zero-in on the people who are directly affected and impacted by these things. And say: ‘Look, if you are having trouble with health insurance or pharmaceutical drugs or access to doctors. If that is a problem. We are going to address that for you. And here is how.'”
Sen. Will Smith (D-Montgomery) said Biden should focus on key issues such as vaccinations, racial justice and infrastructure.
“He needs to stay focused on the vaccine rollout and getting our economy open in a safe and responsible way. He needs to speak to the racial reckoning that we are still very much in the middle of and then I think he would do well to focus in on rebuilding American infrastructure.”
Smith said Biden’s infrastructure plan would benefit Maryland.
“Here in Maryland, we have a prime opportunity with the Red Line, the Purple Line, and for rural investment in broadband. Not only the physical infrastructure in terms of roads and rail, but also broadband.”
Del. Brian Chisholm (R-Anne Arundel) said Biden should convey in his speech that the “security of the American people is paramount.”
Chisholm elaborated on that point.
“I am deeply concerned that if we do not start to produce products then inflation is going to go through the roof. We also need to focus on the border. Obviously we have a crisis down there for anybody that is willing to look.”
Chisholm reiterated his concern about inflation.
“Most paramount in my mind. And I am starting to see signs of it in the real estate market and other places-is that inflation is going to creep up very fast. Because the only way to print money and not have massive inflation is to produce products and services.”
Richard Vatz, a professor of political persuasion at Towson University, said Biden’s speech is unlikely to unite the country.
“I think that uniting the country and even significantly lessening American polarization is unlikely in a non-State of the Union state of the country address to Congress, flanked by Democratic principals only.”
Vatz added: “His (Biden’s) policies abjure bipartisanship, a goal that he said was his aim. His border fecklessness accompanied by Vice President Harris’ uninterest in accepting the president’s charge to visit the border is a conspicuous rejection of presidential prerogative.”
Vatz said Biden’s key policy initiatives have little or no appeal to conservatives because of how much they would cost.
“His American Rescue plan, infrastructure spending plans and other gigantic spending initiatives are seen by conservatives as Trojan Horses. Behind the spending are: tax increases, redistribution of wealth, worthless throwing of money at climate change and redefined fraudulent infrastructure expenditures.”