From CNN:

Barack Obama’s legacy looms awkwardly over Joe Biden. Of course, he cannot disavow, or even really criticize, the administration he helped to lead for eight years. But, by its end, the nation was in such a state that it elected Donald Trump as President — a catastrophe, in Biden’s view. Many on the left as well as on the right now believe that the economic recovery from the Great Recession was botched.

Many on the left as well as on the right disdain the Obamacare-governed healthcare system and demand an overhaul.

The Black Lives Matter movement, we might recall, was born in the Obama years— the number of people shot dead by police each year hasn’t changed significantly since.

Biden’s acceptance speech struggled with the tension. On one hand, he made a point of pausing early to thank Obama. “You were a great president,” he said. But this came just after speaking of “all the young people who have known only an America of rising inequity and shrinking opportunity,” the Obama years presumably included. And it came just after lamenting that “more than 10 million people are going to lose their health insurance this year,” the sort of thing a successful health care overhaul might ideally prevent.

The question for the Biden campaign and a Biden administration is: what will be different? Doing the same thing and expecting a better result is, as the saying goes, the definition of insanity. Yet Biden’s agenda was, almost verbatim, a reiteration of Obama’s: “building on the Affordable Care Act” to deliver those elusive “lower premiums, deductibles, and drug prices”; an education system in which college attendance seems the only concern; vague reference to doubling down on a system of organized labor that has declined toward irrelevance; “equal pay for women”; millions of green jobs; “ending loopholes” in the tax code and making the wealthy pay “their fair share.”

None of this tackles America’s fundamental challenges or changes course from the policy mistakes of the past generation. Biden concluded on the theme that “hope and history rhyme.” The “hope” we remember; we should worry the “history” will repeat.

I doubt that Democrats worry much about addressing the issue of “What will be different?” They have a simple answer: No more Trump.

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