President Joe Biden kicked off a Labor Day tour of two battleground states with a rousing speech in Milwaukee, where he touted his recent victories in Washington, denounced former President Donald Trump’s Republican supporters and took aim specifically Senator Ron Johnson.
“This guy never quits,” Biden said of Johnson, referring to recent stances taken by Johnson, a Republican from Wisconsin. “But guess what? I’m not stopping either,” Biden said to a hoarse round of applause.
Biden touted Inflation Reduction Act, radical climate, health care and the tax bill he signed into law last month, which included a cap on insulin prices for Medicare patients. Johnson voted against the measure.
“We beat the pharmaceutical industry this year,” Biden said, his voice rising. And that was important, we’re going to change people’s lives.
Biden reflected on his achievements in health care and help for the elderly at the same time as Democrats here pondered the issue in the US Senate race against Johnson – one of the most important in the country because the balance of the Senate is at stake. in November.
Johnson had said that funding for health insurance and social security should be reviewed annually, rather than automatically included in the budget. His comments spawned a series of attacks on Johnson, who critics accused of trying to shut down the programs (Johnson denied this.)
Biden’s attacks on Johnson came even though Democratic Senate candidate Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes failed to show up for the event. Governor Tony Evers, however, spoke at the same event as Biden. Evers is in competition against Republican Tim Michels in a tie race.
Biden also spent part of his speech highlighting remarks he made last week in Philadelphia, where he lambasted segments of the Republican Party who had taken extreme views led by former President Donald Trump. In his speech last week, Biden said followers of Trump’s Make America Great Again philosophy, especially those who refused to condemn the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, posed an existential threat to the democracy.
On Monday, Biden again denounced Trump supporters while noting that not all Republicans support the former president’s worldview.
“I want to be very clear from the start. Not all Republicans are MAGA Republicans. Not all Republicans embrace this extreme MAGA ideology. I know that because I’ve been able to work with mainstream Republicans my entire career.” , Biden said. “But MAGA’s extreme Republicans in Congress have chosen to step back, full of anger, violence, hatred and division. But together, we can and must choose a different path.”
Aiming again at Johnson, Biden said, “To this day, MAGA Republicans in Congress are standing up for the mob that stormed the Capitol, people died there. Senate Johnson said it was overall a peaceful protest. Have you seen the videos of what happened that day? »
Biden is scheduled to travel to Pittsburgh later Monday, where he is expected to make similar remarks. Like Wisconsin, Pennsylvania’s Senate race could determine the future of a US Senate that currently sits 50-50.
In Pittsburgh, Biden is scheduled to speak at the United Steelworkers of America Local 2227. This is Biden’s third visit to Pennsylvania in recent days.
Pennsylvania’s Democratic Senate candidate, Lt. Governor John Fetterman who ran a contest against his Republican opponent, Mehmet Oz, said he hoped to discuss marijuana legalization with the President during his Labor Day visit. He did not, however, join Biden in any of his appearances last week at Wilkes-Barre and Philadelphia.
Barnes and Fetterman’s mixed reception signifies broader sentiment among Democratic candidates who tried to distance themselves Of the president. Democratic federal candidates are outperforming the president in their state polls, even as Biden’s endorsement count is on the rise.
During an interview with NBC News on Monday, Josh Shapiro, the Democratic candidate for governor of Pennsylvania, declined to comment on whether Biden’s appearance helps or hurts his campaign.
“I’m not inspired by Washington, DC, I’m inspired by Washington County, Pennsylvania,” he said. “These are the people I listen to. I’m trying to move Pennsylvania forward.”