Biden’s State of the Union Speech comes at tenuous time

by Jacob Fuller

Lauren C. Moye, FISM News

There are now less than 36 hours before President Joe Biden addresses a joint session of Congress for his second State of the Union speech, which comes at a tenuous time in his presidency amid GOP investigations into Biden family affairs and foreign policies.

Biden will address both Congressional houses on Tuesday at 9 p.m. (EST) in an event that will be live-streamed for the public to view. The stakes are high for this speech, which will give insight into how Biden intends to proceed with his administrative priorities with a slim Republican majority in the House.

Biden is expected to announce his 2024 presidential run soon, which makes the speech itself even more critical. Biden not only needs to sell his vision for the next two years to the GOP but he also needs to convince the public that his plans are, in fact, good for the country. That might prove to be an even more difficult task according to a newly released poll.

“The poll finds that 62 percent of Americans think Biden has accomplished ‘not very much’ or ‘little or nothing’ during his presidency, while 36 percent say he has accomplished ‘a great deal’ or ‘a good amount,” a Washington Post-ABC News poll released on Monday found.

Meanwhile, an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll also released this morning found that only 37% of Democrat voters want Biden to run for a second term.

That means that Biden will be under intense public scrutiny. Meanwhile, the speech is scheduled in a week that will be full of moments that will test his integrity and leadership.


Not only will Biden have to find common ground with the Republican party to make any major legislative accomplishments, but he will have to do it while the GOP actively investigates his family and other events that will cast a shadow over his fitness as president.

This plays into a central concern that Biden will face this week: navigating foreign affairs with China after the discovery and destruction of a Chinese ‘spy balloon’ in U.S. airspace.

While China initially claimed the balloon was a “civilian airship,” they have responded with ire to the balloon  being shot down.

According to a Chinese statement obtained by The New York Times, the use of armed force was an “excessive reaction,” and officials have threatened to take further action.

This contrasts with a flurry of outrage from Republicans who feel that Biden did not take action soon enough. In doing so, they fear the president has portrayed the U.S. as weak. Republicans are now considering opening an investigation into why the Biden administration waited to destroy the balloon.

This would join an already extensive line-up of GOP investigations into the Biden administration.

This week alone, there will be two House committees holding hearings on the immigration crisis at the southern border, the weaponization of the federal government, and why Twitter censored the now-verified scandal of Hunter Biden’s laptop.


“These types of speeches continue to evolve, sometimes until the final moments before being delivered, as you can imagine,” White House Press Secretary Karinne Jean-Pierre said on Thursday, before offering a brief preview of what the speech is expected to cover.

Biden is anticipated to tout his administration’s successes, particularly the unexpectedly strong jobs report and labor market update. Many of his talking points can be gleaned from his social media and other recent speeches.

Despite this, plenty of people are willing to push back on the narrative that the common citizen is better under Biden’s presidency than they were under previous administrations. A recent December report shows that rising inflation has 64% of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, with no wiggle room to provide for emergencies.

The 517,000 job increase is likely to lead to a contrast between Republican and Democrat tax philosophies during the speech.

“And part of what I think you’re going to see on Tuesday, when you see the president’s addressing the nation and the Congress in the State of the Union, is a reminder that this successful approach stands in stark contrast to a strategy that — that would focus on things like preserving tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, looking at cutting Social Security and Medicare, which we’re hearing about from a lot of House Republicans,” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said during an appearance on ABC’s “This Week.”

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has said that cuts to Social Security and Medicare programs are not being considered at this time.

Biden is also expected to brag about the bipartisan legislation he has signed into law to try to highlight his willingness to work across the aisle. An example of this is the infrastructure bill.

Biden recently joined forces with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to celebrate this bill. During this time, Biden praised the Republicans who helped pass the act while saying they needed to find “common ground to get major legislation done.”

This will most likely lead to a call for Republicans to make concessions, particularly where they are calling for spending cuts before agreeing to once again raise the U.S. debt ceiling.

Police reform is also likely to be a topic in the speech after the brutal death of Tyre Nichol. However, Jean-Pierre twice hesitated to say Biden would speak on the subject.