Delivering Remarks at The Holocaust Memorial? It Just Keeps Getting Worse for Biden 

newrita /
newrita /

On May 7, 2024, President Joe Biden faced a pivotal moment in his election campaign. He was forced to draw a line in the sand, vocalize support for Israel, and condemn the antisemitism running rampant in his party during remarks at the annual US Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Days of Remembrance ceremony at the US Capitol building. 

He didn’t have a choice. America has been an ally of Israel since 1948, when the U.S. became the first country to recognize the state as a nation after it declared its independence.  

Biden has straddled the fence following the October 7, 2023, Hamas attack on hundreds of innocent Israelis who were attending a concert. The bloodshed was brutal, ruthless, and unprecedented, the worst terrorist attack on Israeli soil. 

Biden came strong out of the gate, condemning Hamas and declaring America’s support of Israel during the chaotic days that followed. That outward support, however, was quick to waver when many within Biden’s party sided with Hamas. 

Biden has largely done what he does best. Stay on the fence and try not to ruffle voters’ feathers. For him, the Israeli war is downright inconvenient. 

But yesterday, standing in front of a podium at the U.S. Capitol Building, Biden expressed his support for Israel and his condemnation of those who support Palestine and anti-Semitic views.  

It must be acknowledged, albeit grudgingly, that his speech was a unifying moment in an otherwise divisive Biden presidency. He offered this message to the Jewish people, “I see your fear, your hurt, and your pain. Let me reassure you as your president: You are not alone. You belong. You always have, and you always will.” 

Of course, his reassurances offer scant comfort to those experiencing the left’s hatred. Jewish Students nationwide are reporting instances of facing physical attacks or harassment while on campus, encountering anti-Semitic remarks such as being told to “return to Poland,” enduring verbal insults, and discovering swastikas on dormitory doors. 

Speaking at the same event, House Speaker Mike Johnson drew parallels between the current turmoil on college campuses and the academic environment in Germany during the 1930s and 40s, where anti-Semitic teachings were prevalent. He remarked that American universities rapidly evolved into unwelcoming spaces for Jewish students and faculty. 

But it’s those students and adults espousing their rabid antisemitism that are fueling Biden’s voter base.

A recent Pew report found that young Americans tend to sympathize more with Palestinians than Israelis. About a third of adults under 30 say they mostly or entirely support the Palestinian people, while only 14% feel the same about Israelis. Another survey by Gallup showed that 55% of all Americans disapprove of Israel’s military actions. This disapproval is even higher among Democrats, with 75% expressing it, up from 63% last November. 

And Biden is feeling the strain from his own party on the Hill. Many in Democratic leadership positions, like AOC (D-NY), Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), and the left-leaning Bernie Sanders (I-VT), have espoused distinctly antisemitic and pro-Palestinian views. 

Biden was forced to speak out against the nationwide protests at universities, and alongside the speech, Biden’s administration unveiled several new measures to strengthen its efforts against antisemitism. 

The Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights will contact every school district and college nationwide to provide specific instances of antisemitic discrimination that could be looked into under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. 

With Biden’s polling numbers already tanking because of illegal immigration and a devolving economy, his speech at the ceremony couldn’t have come at a worse time. His campaign took advantage of Yom HaShoah, which is Holocaust Remembrance Day, to release a detailed list highlighting former President Donald Trump’s alleged antisemitic remarks and actions. This included reports suggesting that Trump once made favorable comments about Adolf Hitler, stating that he “did some good things.”  

He also, in true Biden style, inserted himself into the struggles of the Jewish people.  

He couldn’t resist taking a somber and important moment and turning it into an opportunity for his campaign. He spoke of growing up with discussions about the horrors of the holocaust at the dinner table, mentioned taking his grandchildren to Dachau, recalled three visits to Yad Vashem, and spoke of Tom Lantos, the first-ever Jewish Senator, and how he got his political start working on Biden’s staff. 

Still, Biden’s speech marked a moment when Biden took a stand against his own voter base. With seven months left before the 2024 election, his remarks are sure to enrage the rabid antisemites he harbors in his party.  

He may have done the right thing, but for Biden’s campaign, it just keeps getting worse.