Why Biden Will Lose the Left—and How That Could Help Him

Why Biden Will Lose the Left—and How That Could Help Him

The Democratic coalition is already fracturing. But losing his erstwhile allies could actually make it easier to govern—and boost his standing.

Scarcely a month after the Democrats came together to help Joe Biden win the U.S. presidential election, the famously fractious party is already splintering at record speed.

Barely a day goes by without a new crack appearing. The left has pushed back faster, and more aggressively, against Biden’s cabinet picks than against those of any previous Democratic president. It already seems to have claimed one victim—Rahm Emanuel, who was reportedly under consideration to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development or the Department of Transportation. And activist groups, joined by left-leaning members of Congress, are now fighting to block the nominations of anyone with ties to the defense industry (such as retired Gen. Lloyd Austin), big business (Jeff Zients, Brian Deese, and Adewale Adeyemo), or the aggressive, and in some cases extreme, military policies of past administrations (Mike Morell)—never mind the diverse backgrounds of many of the nominees.

Other progressives, meanwhile, have taken to the internet to warn that the not-yet-seated Biden administration may already be a lost cause. And on Nov. 7—the same day that cable networks finally called the election—the socialist magazine Jacobin tweeted, “It’s good that Donald Trump lost. But the Left now needs to pivot immediately to opposition to the Joe Biden administration.”