On Thursday morning, Democrats kicked off their nationwide "Build Back Better" bus tour in Alexandria, Virginia. DNC Chairman Jaime Harrison appeared with former Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-VA), who was elected in 2013 and is running again for the 2021 race as the Virginia constitution prohibits governors from serving back-to-back terms.
The kickoff, which included Harrison, McAuliffe, and other local leaders, took place outside the tour bus. The participants wore masks when not speaking.
Remarks from Harrison and McAuliffe both took digs at Republicans.
As included in a DNC press release:
“Thanks to President Biden and Democrats, America is building back better than ever, and the DNC is hitting the road to make sure everybody knows that the ‘D’ in Democrats stands for ‘deliver,’” said Democratic National Committee Chair Jaime Harrison. “Because of President Biden’s and Democrats’ leadership, jobs and wages are up, unemployment is down, and middle-class families are benefiting from a major tax cut. We know there is still work to be done and the DNC’s ‘Build Back Better’ bus tour will remind people across the country that it is Democrats who are delivering results for the American people — no thanks to Republicans.”
“Thanks to President Biden’s efforts, America and Virginia are building back stronger than before from this pandemic,” said Virginia Governor Candidate Terry McAuliffe. “The American Rescue plan is lifting up families and small businesses across the Commonwealth, investing in our schools, and providing vital funding for vaccine efforts. My opponent Glenn Youngkin, who has been endorsed by Donald Trump three times, opposes these efforts and has called them 'unnecessary.' Come November, I will make sure Glenn and his dangerous, Trumpian agenda don't get anywhere near the Governor's office.”
McAuliffe had made the same claims over Twitter earlier in the week. Youngkin tweeted back right away to correct the record, specifically to point out that he only opposed certain parts.
Harrison made a separate tour stop later in the day in Newport News, Virginia, at which point he appeared with Attorney General Mark Herring (D-VA), who is running for re-election against Republican Del. Jason Miyares, and Del. Hala Ayala, the Democrat who is running for Lieutenant Governor.
From another DNC press release:
"It’s been an honor to welcome the DNC and Chair Harrison to our great Commonwealth of Virginia,” said Attorney General Mark Herring. “President Biden and Democrats all over the country have been delivering on the issues that everyday Americans care about during the COVID-19 pandemic. I plan to continue building on all of the progress we have already made protecting Virginians rights and access to affordable healthcare as we navigate out of this pandemic."
“Thanks to President Biden and our Democratic partners in Congress, America is on track to build back better,” said Delegate Hala Ayala, Democratic Nominee for Lieutenant Governor. “During last week’s special legislative session, I proudly voted to pass Governor Northam’s budget, which allocated American Rescue Plan dollars to support our small businesses, expand broadband, and invest in our students and teachers. From uplifting families with the Child Tax Credit to creating millions of good-paying jobs through critical infrastructure investments, President Biden and Vice President Harris are showing us all what true leadership looks like.”
"Today radical leftists from the Democrat National Committee joined their standard-bearer Mark Herring in his push for a third term as Attorney General," Miyares Campaign Manager Klarke Kilgore said in a statement for Townhall. "Not even Ralph Northam thought Mark Herring deserved a third term. Virginia is long overdue for a leadership change in the Attorney General’s office," he also reminded.
Kilgore also pointed out that Herring did not mention the following in his three-minute remarks:
The Parole Board’s releasing of murders
The Parole Board’s releasing of rapists
The Parole Board’s releasing of child abductors
Virginia’s sky-high murder rate
Virginia Police Departments' struggle to retain and hire officers
The DNC directed people to reporting from Alayna Treene for Axios about the "Build Back Better" bus tour. As Treene included in her reporting:
Why it matters: The tour comes as lawmakers in both parties gear up for a messaging warahead of the 2022 midterms. It will also coincide with Congress' August recess — when members of the House and Senate will already be back in their districts.
- Axios reported Sunday that Republicans believe inflation, crime and illegal immigration are shaping up as issues that will help them regain at least one congressional majority next year.
- The “Build Back Better Tour” will traverse more than 10 states, touting Biden's legislative successes while attacking Republicans for voting against his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan and painting them as an impediment to the needs of everyday Americans.
- It will also come on the heels of another expected victory for Biden: passage of the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package, expected Tuesday.
This Republican message, which the GOP is unified on and vocal about, could very well spell trouble for the Democrats when it comes to the 2022 midterm elections. Historically speaking, the president's party tends to lose seats during the mid-term election. Democrats only have a majority in the 50-50 U.S. Senate because Vice President Kamala Harris is the tie-breaking vote. In the U.S. House of Representatives, the Democratic majority is in the single digits.
Thursday also brought a post from the Congressional Leadership Fund (CLF) titled "Doubling Down to Build Back Broke." It noted the following:
- A key measure of inflation hit a record high this morning, with prices for producers increasing 8%
- Inflation for consumers yesterday rung in at a 13 year high, increasing 5.4%
- Meanwhile, a top Obama economic advisor is warning inflation has “wiped out” any pay increases to working families
- And new polling says 80% of Americans blame Biden and Democrats for the surge in inflation
CLF Communications Director Calvin Moore weighed in on the issue. "With Americans finding it more expensive than ever to get by, Biden doubling down on printing trillions for their far-left political agenda proves how out of touch Democrats are with working families," he said. “Families need relief from the policies that are making it more and more costly to make ends meet, but instead Democrats want more of same failed ideas that got us into this mess to begin with.”
Katie, also on Thursday, highlighted a recent Fox News poll which shows a majority of Americans have been negatively impacted by inflation.