AMAC Exclusive – By Claire Brighn
As families gather for Christmas this year, it’s impossible to ignore the pinch of inflation that is hitting Americans hard. Seemingly everything – from pocketbooks to grocery store shelves – has been subject to Biden’s looting of the middle and working class to fund Democrats’ far-left priorities. Biden, it seems, is this Christmas’s real-life Grinch.
Soaring inflation has meant that many families can’t afford to have as much around the tree this year – or even at the dinner table. While overall inflation numbers have eased slightly from nearly 40-year-highs, grocery prices are continuing to skyrocket, rising 12% in November. In total, 66% of families say they are worse off financially than last year because of inflation.
In addition to his massive spending packages exacerbating inflation, Biden’s climate agenda has also stolen American energy independence and sent costs ever-higher. According to the Energy Information Administration, it’s about 23% more expensive for Americans to heat their home this year than it was last year. To get in the car and visit family for Christmas will cost about $1 more per gallon than when Biden took office – and airline fares are also up 36% from last year.
In another alarming sign of the economic condition of the country, 401k ‘hardship’ withdrawals have hit a record high already, according to Vanguard – suggesting many Americans are becoming increasingly desperate to make ends meet. Credit card debt is through the roof. As mortgage rates skyrocket, economists warn the Housing Market Index – well below the safe 50 point margin – shows the housing market is in recession territory.
With real wages down, Americans also have less disposable income than when Biden first took office. One recent CNBC survey found that caution around holiday spending is at its highest since 2013. Everything about celebrating the holiday is now more expensive. Those who buy a Christmas tree can expect to pay up to 15% more than last year. When you make dinner, ham will cost roughly 7.8% more and a pie will cost 19.4% more compared to last year. Even milk for Santa is up about 15%. A record number of Americans went to food banks just last month for Thanksgiving.
It’s the same sad story at the border. Christmas, unfortunately, is really ruined for border patrol agents who’ve been struggling to keep their heads above water ever since Biden unleashed a wave of illegal immigration with his open border policies. “Depressed, unmotivated, and frustrated,” is how one border patrol agent described feeling.
Much like the Grinch, Biden doesn’t seem to care at all about how his actions are causing others to suffer. When pressed on the border, Biden said that there are “more important” things going on. His copious use of vacation days and luxurious getaways to Delaware have also tallied up to cost American taxpayers at least $11 million – hardly reflective of a president working hard to alleviate the pain that ordinary families are feeling. While Biden promised that all his massive spending in 2021 would mean more prosperity for families, so far all they’ve gotten is higher bills and financial troubles.
Biden even seems determined to steal the meaning of Christmas from the American people. Just like his speech last year at the traditional National Christmas Tree Lighting on the White House Ellipse, this year Biden made no reference to Christ or the Christian faith, despite professing to be a devout Catholic. Instead, he once again resorted to tired, uninspiring platitudes that the left has long relied upon to sanitize and commercialize Christmas.
One can only hope that, like the redeemed Grinch, Biden decides at some point to put the presents back under the tree. Like in the movie, such action would be relatively simple – reversing the left’s war on American energy, visiting the border as the first step toward securing it, or mentioning God once in a while in his rather draconian “winter of severe illness and death” speeches.
But given Biden’s long track record, it seems unlikely at best that Biden’s heart will grow three sizes – or even one – anytime soon. Short of a Christmas miracle, Americans will likely have to wait until 2024 to send the White House Grinch packing and elect a new leader who will give to, rather than take from, his voters.
Claire Brighn is the pen name of a conservative researcher and writer with previous domestic and foreign policy experience in the Executive Branch.
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