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The Big Biden Speech Meltdown

The ConWeb simultaneously -- and unsurprisingly -- had fits over President Biden's speech calling out the extremism of MAGA Republicans.

By Terry Krepel
Posted 10/24/2022

The ConWeb moves in ideological lockstep on many things, and hatred of President Biden is one of them. So when Biden gave a Sept. 1 speech using tough language against right-wing Trump supporters who refuse to accept that the indisputable fact there was no fraud in the 2020 federal election and pointing out the threat that poses to the country, the ConWeb rose up to attack the speech with everything they had.

First up,, which did a lot of whining about the speech:

  • Melanie Arter wrote in an Aug. 31 article that "American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp said Wednesday that by President Joe Biden calling conservatives who support former President Trump 'fascists,' he’s showing himself to be what he accuses them of being." Arter uncritically repeated Schlapp's false claim that "The Trump agenda was universally popular."
  • Susan Jones editorialized in a Sept. 1 "news" article: "As President Joe Biden excoriates millions of Americans as 'MAGA Republicans' 'extremists,' 'semi-fascists' and threats to democracy -- something he's likely to do again tonight in his so-called 'soul of the nation' speech -- former House Speaker Newt Gingrich says Biden's sneering insults stem from 'terror.'"
  • Another pre-speech article by Jones sneered, "Biden tonight will discuss his version of "the soul of the nation," a phrase of vague meaning that he's been using since before he became president," before going on to quote another Republican (Mario Rubio) attacking him.
  • Jones continued to whine in another article that "As President Joe Biden gears up for another political speech tonight, he's expected to continue his attack on the millions of Americans he calls "MAGA Republicans" before, yes, hyping yet another attack by a Republican (Kevin McCarthy).
  • A weirdly anonymously written commentary (but one may assume that, given the subject matter, it was written by editor Terry Jeffrey) huffed that "Biden’s view is that for America’s soul to be right, the nation must allow for abortion on demand. ... In other words, deliberately killing an unborn baby is a “fundamental right” in Biden’s view." There was no explanation why the commentary's author was being hidden.

When Biden did make that speech, CNS worked hard to portray it as negatively as possible. Jones was first up to complain:

"Too much of what’s happening in our country today is not normal," President Joe Biden said Thursday night in Philadelphia, as he called for the nation to "come together," even as he disparaged Donald Trump and his supporters, saying they "represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our republic."

Biden said he wanted to be "very clear."

"Not every Republican, not even the majority of Republicans, are MAGA Republicans. Not every Republican embraces their extreme ideology. I know because I’ve been able to work with these mainstream Republicans," Biden continued:


After demonizing Trump and those who agree with Trump's aim to "make America great again," Biden called for unity, as he did in his presidential campaign -- a goal never attained.

"That’s why tonight I’m asking our nation to come together, unite behind the single purpose of defending our democracy regardless of your ideology," Biden said:

Jones offered no fact-based rebuttal to anything Biden said, but she made sure to give space to Republican attacks:

In a speech in Scranton on Thursday, a speech billed as a "pre-buttal," House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said since Biden became president, he "has launched an assault on the soul of America and its people and its laws -- on its most sacred values.

"He has launched an assault on our democracy,” McCarthy said: "His policies have severely wounded America's soul, diminished America's spirit and betrayed America's trust.

McCarthy noted that for the past 19 months, Democrats have controlled all branches of government. "They have all the levers of power. So let me ask you this: How have they done?...Are you better off? What has two years of one-party rule in Washington given us?"

Then the cherry-picking began. Patrick Goodenough groused that "On a day when President Biden in a combative speech lumped opposition to abortion with other purported characteristics of the “extremism” represented by “MAGA Republicans,” a DNC Twitter post on the subject prompted a plaintive question from the advocacy group Democrats for Life of America: “What about pro-life Democrats?” We don't recall CNS giving pro-choice Republicans similar deference. Jeffrey brought his anti-abortion obsession as well:

President Joe Biden delivered an address in front of Independence Hall in Philadelphia on Thursday night--that the White House described as remarks on the “battle for the soul of the nation”--in which Biden advocated for same-sex marriage and killing unborn babies through abortion.

“MAGA forces are determined to take this country backwards—backwards to an America where there is no right to choose, no right to privacy, no right to contraception, no right to marry who you love,” Biden said.

Since it had trouble rebutting Biden on the facts, CNS then moved to optics. An anonymously written article complained that "Biden used two members of the U.S. Marine Corps as props to stand behind him outside Independence Hall in Philadelphia on Thursday night as he delivered a speech attacking what he called “MAGA Republicans.” But the anonymous reporter censored the fact that Trump had no problem using the military as props for his political purposes.

Craig Bannister devoted an article to repeating right-wing attacks on the "ominous" lighting of the stage from which Biden gave the speech:

Ominous images from President Joe Biden’s “battle for the soul of America” prime-time address Thursday night went viral on social media, as the angry, animated president stood before a striking blood-red background with Marines on either side in the shadows behind him during a "dark and divisive" speech.


“Satanic Ghoul,” commentator and Podcaster Allie Beth Stuckey tweeted, captioning one screenshot of an enraged Biden with arms raised and fists clenched during the speech.

“Biden Goes Third Reich. Progressives Fawn Over Their House Fascist,” Radio Host Eric Erickson tweeted, along with the picture. “Staging by Leni Riefenstahl,” Erickson commented in an earlier post of the image.

In a separate article, Bannister cheered that "Broadcast networks ABC, NBC, and CBS aired their regularly-scheduled programs Thursday, instead of President Joe Biden’s angry, divisive speech attacking Make America Great Again (MAGA) Americans."

There were still more attack articles as well:

For all their political attacks, none of these articles offered a fact-based rebuttal to anything Biden said in his speech.

Media Research Center

Like its "news" division CNS, the Media Research Center did not like Biden's speech. In a pre-speech post, Nicholas Fondacaro set up the right-wing narrative of Biden (and not the highly divisive Donald Trump) as the real divider, and whine about CNN as well:

In another example of his open defiance of new CNN boss Chris Licht’s order to be less egregious in their partisanship, Don Lemon spent part of his eponymous show on Wednesday arguing with Republican Scott Jennings and absurdly claiming that President Biden was “unifying” the country by calling Republicans fascists. He even suggested it was “the truth about what is happening in the country” and asked, “where’s the lie?”

Jennings noted that Biden had abandoned his message of unity from his 2020 campaign and inaugural address. “Yes. But a lot has happened between now and his inaugural address,” Lemon scoffed at the objection.

After the speech, the pro-Republican Bill D'Agostino started the whinefest by complaining that people outside his right-wing bubble liked it:

President Biden’s Thursday night speech was a big hit on the pro-Democrat TV networks. CNN, MSNBC, and NBC News Now all carried the event and heaped effusive praise on their favorite president’s rhetoric.

CNN and MSNBC were rife with the usual Democrat cheerleading that viewers have come to expect from left-wing cable. Panelists praised the speech as “fascinating,” “optimistic,” and “very, very patriotic.”

Curtis Houck insisted it was "GROSS" (as he stated in all-caps in his headline) for Biden to call right-wing extremists what they are:

The “big three” networks of ABC, CBS, and NBC eagerly reported Friday morning how President Biden spent Thursday evening declaring former President Trump and his 74-million-plus voters not only dangerous but threats to national security (despite Biden’s attempts to walk it back).

Instead of offering pushback or noting how the speech was an official White House event in Philadelphia with Marines flanking him, the morning news shows trumpeted his “blistering,” “charged,” and “fiery...speech” leveling of the GOP.

Alex Christy piled on CNN's Lemon again:

Don Lemon responded to President Biden’s Thursday partisan screed by accusing GOP critics of playing word games, because in his mind there is a big difference between allegations that Biden called Republicans fascists and the fact that he called MAGA a semi-fascist ideology. Lemon further alleged that anybody who doesn’t appreciate this difference is suffering from hearing loss.

Arguing with Republican strategist Alice Stewart, Lemon claimed, “So, Alice, we have been -- since he made that speech, we have been going, you know, back and forth about exactly what was happening, who is he calling. You know, the -- I think it was the semi-fascism. He made a clear distinction tonight.”


Stewart is correct, for all Lemon’s talk about MAGA Republicans and fascism versus semi-fascism, Biden also vilified pro-lifers and fear-mongered about contraception. That sounds like he was talking about more than 20 percent of the population.

Scott Whitlock huffed: "Doing the dirty work of Joe Biden, MSNBC vilified half the country on three separate shows, comparing the Democrat to Abraham Lincoln’s fight to save the union or Franklin Roosevelt’s rhetorical fight in 1940 against fascism."

P.J. Gladnick tried to establish an alternate narrative, claiming that "As a reflection of just how poorly Joe Biden's dark speech in Philadelphia on Thursday about what he labeled as MAGA extremism was received, even a number of liberals criticized it." But he named only one person, a Washington Post columnist whom he did not prove was a "liberal." Tim Graham's podcast predictably stuck to the narrative:

President Biden gave a nasty primetime speech on Thursday night on how 'MAGA Republicans' are a threat to American democracy, and the media celebrated it as "reclaiming patriotism." He explicitly called out the entire Republican Party as threatening the future of democracy in America.

Christy joined the whine brigade against another CNN commentator:

CNN’s S.E. Cupp traveled over to CNN International’s Amanpour and Company on Friday, which is broadcast in the United States on PBS, to discuss President Biden’s “semi-fascist” remarks. The allegedly conservative Cupp proclaimed the label to be “correctly” applied and it was “courageous” of Biden to do so.

Guest host Sara Sidner played a clip of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy condemning Biden for the remarks, which she saw as hypocritical, “Now, we certainly didn't hear McCarty saying anything like that for some of the comments that Donald Trump has made.”

Under that logic no Democratic can criticize Republicans without also denouncing Biden, but double run rampant at CNN and PBS. Stil, Sidner wondered, “is he correct that he -- that when Biden used this language, that he, basically, accused all Republicans with a similar brush, or do you think that he actually hit the right tone?”

Cupp responded by declaring that he did, “I think he correctly identified a strain within MAGA—MAGA— world. I mean, it -- there are very few words to describe what Republicans are doing.”

Graham then ran to his favorite "news" channel to whine about the speech some more:

NewsBusters Executive Editor Tim Graham discussed President Biden's primetime speech decrying 'MAGA Republicans' endangering democracy on Friday's Fox News at Night. Fox host Kevin Corke noted The Washington Post editorial board criticized the speech as more partisan than patriotic.

Graham slammed Biden for suggesting the entire Republican Party was a threat to democracy: "Good for The Washington Post editorial board for saying it was a nasty partisan speech. It doesn't actually accomplish what he thinks it was supposed to accomplish."

Mark Finkelstein complained about MSNBC guest host Tiffany Cross and guest Roland Martin endorsing Biden's speech, adding: "And note that Martin wasn't singling out ultra-MAGA Republicans as 'evil.' In inviting Martin to comment, Cross explicitly said that Trump's followers are 'mainstream, establishment Republicans [who] are echoing these calls for violence. All but threatening it.'"

Christy returned to whine some more, this that that "CNN’s John Avlon approached Tuesday’s so-called reality check on New Day claiming to be a man of data as he defended President Biden’s recent speech denouncing “MAGA Republicans.” Yet, as Avlon lamented the “gnashing of teeth” from Republicans in response, Avlon again claimed Republicans are more extreme than Democrats."


Biden's speech didn't go over well at WND, which hurled all the invective it could find or invent to attack it. Bob Unruh parroted the response of right-wing evangelist Franklin Graham, who called the speech an attack on "freedom-loving Americans," followed by attacks from more of Unruh's fellow right-wingers. Unruh followed that by quoting the response of Donald Trump, who is the lead instigator in threatening democracy, and insert his own non-journalistic bias:

President Donald Trump, known for his blunt and often insulting social media comments while in office, was on familiar ground responding to Joe Biden's Philadelphia speech, in which the Democrat blamed patriotic Republicans for trying to kill democracy.

Trump suggested Biden is "insane, or suffering from late stage dementia."


Biden's speech, highly partisan while he stood in front of a blood-red backdrop and was flanked by U.S. Marines, essentially tried to make the entire 2022 midterm elections about President Trump.

That would divert the public's attention from Biden's own southern border crisis, rampant inflation that has hit America's low- and middle-income families extremely hard, food prices up by double digits, gasoline in the $6 range although it has edged back a bit in recent weeks, massive spending on "green" projects through the misnamed "Inflation Reduction Act" and more.

Then came the hyperbolic reactions from WND's columnists. Here's a sampling:

That speech given by Biden was intended to incite civil war in America. Biden and his communist comrades want violence and a badly divided nation. They're daring us to start a civil war.

You know – exactly like all the BLM and antifa events of 2020.

They want us to do exactly what they already did. Riots, looting, torching, robbing, murder, attacks on police, billions in damage, thousands of businesses destroyed – but with the media's protection, it was all forgotten.

They want conservative patriots to do the same – except this time, their business partners in the media will make us into "America's Most Wanted." They'll call us Nazis, fascists, extremists, traitors, domestic terrorists and insurrectionists. Oh, wait: Biden already called us all of that in his speech – before we've ever done a thing. Can you imagine what they'd say if we actually committed violence?

That's the trap.

-- Wayne Allyn Root, Sept. 2 column

After hearing the president criticize the people who do not agree with him politically, I was left with a feeling of disgust. It seems to me that the man who is in the office of president of my country, declared the winner of the prior election, and considered the leader of the free world, would have more decency than to accuse his political opponent and his supporters of undermining democracy.

It was a cheap shot, and there was much more. He said that free elections are in danger, that our very democracy is at stake, and he warned of political violence, saying that those opponents are fanning those political flames.

All this – and the event was paid for by taxpayers. Great! Americans – Democrats and Republicans – were paying for their president to slam and insult them.

-- Barbara Simpson, Sept. 2 column


This guy is totally sick, depraved, a hater like no other elected American president in our lifetime, perhaps besides Woodrow Wilson.

We can talk about the influence of Biden's "handlers" – Barack Obama, Susan Rice, Marc Elias, the law firm of Perkins Coie, Ronald Klain. This sounded more like straight on George Soros with a tinge of Adolf Hitler.


From the standpoint of optics, it was a cross between what you would see from the Antichrist and Molech – only darker and more threatening.

And this was a speech about "the soul of the nation." Uh-uh. Rather, this was a reflection of Biden's soul.


The man is a dangerous reprobate. God help us.

-- Joseph Farah, Sept. 5 column

In front of a creepy dark red backdrop, with men in military uniforms standing several feet behind him that has since been compared to a scene from George Orwell's dystopian "1984," Biden accused "the extreme MAGA ideology" of engaging in an "ongoing attack on democracy."

-- Rachel Alexander, Sept. 5 column

Biden believes he is historically a "messianic" figure like Lincoln during the Civil War and FDR in World War II. I personally pray for him daily but believe he is cognitively deficient, living in a state of denial and devoid of a moral compass to protect human life in the womb, on the border or in war-torn Afghanistan where multitudes were callously left behind as the Taliban reconstitutes, enslaves masses and puts women back into slavery. Where is the outcry from the women of the world?

Like Jimmy Carter, Joe Biden is an accidental president. Carter was given the prize because of Nixon's resignation, Watergate and a weak Jerry Ford. Biden got the job because of COVID, collusion lies (launched by Hillary) and a biased media relentlessly trashing Trump while ignoring the scandal of Biden and his son along with Hillary Clinton's destruction of her 30,000 emails with no FBI investigation of her home.

-- Larry Tomczak, Sept. 6 column

To anyone not living in Joe Biden's Bizarro World it is clear that the Americans who do care about limited constitutional government and the rule of the law are the nation's conservative, those and a few stray friends.

How did such a twisted and demonic speech come out of the mouth of an American president? I speculate here, but I suspect that Biden's unholy ghost may have been Satan himself.

-- Jack Cashill, Sept. 7 column

But this was no mere speech-writing misfire; the panic-pimping is deliberate.

And dangerous.


It is Biden and the far-left Democrats who pose the real threat to the American system and our way of life. It is not enough to criticize Biden for his false and vicious attacks on Americans. He and his political cronies must be punished by removing them from positions of power for good.

-- Laura Hollis, Sept. 8 column

Could OBiden's Nazi-themed speech of Sept. 1 have been subtle psychological preparation of the American people for imminent war with Russia and a not-so subtle taunt and mockery of Vladimir Putin's pledge to de-Nazify Ukraine (and the West)?

-- Scott Lively, Sept. 8 column

Nope, they didn't take it very well at all, and they're projecting -- pretending that their beloved Trump was never polarizing or hateful toward his political opponents.


Newsmax did what it could to attack Biden's speech. A "news" article, apparently a Reuters piece that was "contributed" to by Newsmax, led off its coverage under the headline "Divider-in-Chief?":

President Joe Biden charged Republican allies of Donald Trump with undermining the country's democratic foundations and urged voters on Thursday to reject extremism ahead of midterm elections in November.

His attack, detailed in a draft speech released earlier in the day, was speedily and forcefully rebuked by GOP leaders who have accused "divider-in-chief" Biden and his supporters of dispensing their own brand of damaging, dangerous rhetoric.

Newsmax also devoted an article by Charles Kim complaining that "Progressives appear to be very happy with President Joe Biden's speech."

Jeffrey Rodack served as the servile pro-Trump stenographer of Trump's rage-posting in a Sept. 2 article:

Former President Donald Trump is blasting Joe Biden's prime-time speech, calling it "awkward and angry," and saying the president "must be insane or suffering from late stage dementia."

Trump made his remarks in posts on his Truth Social platform after Biden's Thursday night speech.

He wrote: "Someone should explain to Joe Biden, slowly but passionately, that MAGA means, as powerfully as mere words can get, MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! If he doesn't want to Make America Great Again, which through words, action, and thought, he doesn't, then he certainly should not be representing the United States of America!"

He also posted: "If you look at the words and meaning of the awkward and angry Biden speech tonight, he threatened America, including with the possible use of military force. He must be insane, or suffering from late stage dementia!"

In another post, Trump showed side-by-side photos of Biden with both arms raised while making his prime-time speech and of himself kissing the American flag.

Then came the usual transcriptions of Newsmax TV appearances by right-wing activists and Republican politicians:

Newsmax's own resident Trump toady, Dick Morris, chimed in as well:

President Joe Biden's dark and divisive Thursday speech was not about America, but more about former President Donald Trump to try to turn the attention of the midterm voters to the past president rather than the struggles of the sitting one, according to presidential adviser Dick Morris on Newsmax.

"The question is, why would Biden take these hits — take the risk of giving so incendiary and unpresidential and intemperate of a speech as president — and the answer is because he's essentially falling on his sword to bring the issue to Trump and making this issue all about Donald Trump," Morris told "Saturday Report."

Morris noted the persistent attacks on Trump are going to fail to keep him from running in 2024, as he wrote in his book.

"Now the only issue will be Trump and the archives, and it's a trivial issue: literally overdue library books; here's no national security implications," Morris told host Rita Cosby.

The faulty library-book excuses comes straight from Trump's lawyers.

Newsmax columnists unsurprisingly hated the speech as well. Michael Dorstewitz issued a litany of complaints, only some of which had to do with the speech:

President Joe Biden pointed his finger in the wrong direction during last night’s prime-time speech when he purported to describe an "ongoing attack on democracy."

There’s no questions but that America’s rights and freedoms are under attack. But they’re under attack by the Democratic Party, not what he calls "MAGA Republicans."


And on the subject of identity politics, Rachel Levine was chosen as the first transgender assistant secretary of Health, Sam Brinton as the first nonbinary deputy assistant secretary of Energy, and Karine Jean-Pierre as the first Black and openly LGBTQ female White House press secretary.


Continuing the definition, under "severe economic and social regimentation," Biden implemented onerous COVID restrictions, making vaccination of an experimental drug a prerequisite to continued employment.

The administration also pushed to severely limit in-person learning.

Dorstewitz didn't explain why it was a bad thing to do what needed to be done to try and limit the spread of a deadly virus, and he failed to mention that the COVID vaccine was developed under Trump (and is not "experimental").

Newsmax was still attacking the speech days later. A Sept. 6 article transcribed a Newsmax TV appearance by Republican Rep. Markwayne Mullin, who declared that ''I think President Biden owes every patriot American out there that's from a red state that voted for President Trump an apology, and he should do it now,'' and another article gave space to GOP Rep. Ralph Norman to whine that "Joe Biden did what he always does, which is use his voice to basically lambaste anybody that voted for President Trump. His hatred is that big."

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