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Former White House Chief of Staff Blasts Biden in Leaked Audio for Ignoring Inflation

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Former White Hose Chief of Staff, Ron Klain

Former White House chief of staff Ron Klain didn’t hold back in his recent comments about President Biden’s focus—or lack thereof—on some critical issues facing Americans. In leaked audio from a private event, Klain criticized Biden for making infrastructure a much more important task over more important concerns like inflation and grocery prices.

During the event hosted by “Democracy: A Journal of Ideas,” Klain voiced his frustration, suggesting that Biden’s emphasis on infrastructure was misplaced. He argued, “There’s too much talking about bridges and not enough about eggs and milk.” Klain’s candid remarks shed light on a growing dissatisfaction within the Democratic camp regarding Biden’s messaging priorities.

Klain highlighted Biden’s frequent appearances at ribbon-cutting ceremonies for infrastructure projects, suggesting that actions like this made him more of a congressman rather than a president.

He emphasized the disconnect between Biden’s focus on bridges and what everyday Americans struggle with every day, trying to afford basic things like groceries. Klain’s very blunt assessment showed concerns that Biden’s messaging strategy, that it was out of touch with the economic realities facing many Americans.

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ALSO READ: US Justice Department Rejects Republicans Call for Audio of Biden Interview

While Klain’s comments may seem like a betrayal of his ex-boss, they actually are the major concerns within the Democratic Party about messaging and priorities. Klain’s time as chief of staff, which ended in early 2023, makes his critique of Biden’s approach a much more weightier comment.

In Klain’s interview with Politico, he emphasized the importance of Biden’s economic message identified with voters. He argued that highlighting abstract achievements, such as infrastructure projects, was less persuasive than addressing the concerns of families struggling with rising costs.

Responding to Klain’s remarks, White House deputy press secretary Andrew Bates came out to defend his boss and explained why there is the focus on infrastructure. He said it is part of a broader strategy to support the middle class and lower costs. Bates spoke highly of Biden’s efforts to combat Republican proposals that favor wealthy interests over everyday Americans.

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“Like Ron says, President Biden is crisscrossing the country building on his State of the Union message, highlighting that he is fighting to grow the middle class and lower costs like prescription drugs while blocking the trickle-down agenda Republican officials have proposed on behalf of rich special interests, including Medicare cuts and tax giveaways to big corporations,” Bates told Politico

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Since his multi day tour of Wisconsin and Michigan in March, Joe Biden has been very keen on infrastructure and even announced $3.3 billion for infrastructure projects in disadvantaged communities. Speaking at an event in Milwaukee, Biden framed infrastructure investments as crucial for improving the lives of Americans for years to come.

“We’re rebuilding the roads, we’re filling in the cracks in the sidewalk, we’re creating spaces to live and work and play safely, and to breathe clean air, and to shop at a nearby grocery stocked with fresh and healthy food,” he said at an event in Milwaukee at the time.

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“You’ve lived and felt decisions made decades ago,” Biden said. “Today, today, we’re making decisions to transform your lives for decades to come.”

ALSO READ: President Biden Set to Discuss New Student Loan Forgiveness Plan

The grants announced by Biden covered 132 projects across various cities, ranging from Atlanta to Los Angeles and Philadelphia to Birmingham. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg highlighted the diversity of projects, noting that some would be completed relatively quickly while others represented long-term endeavors.

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