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HAWORTH: Biden’s 5 Most Significant Flip-Flops
US Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks about on the third plank of his Build Back Better economic recovery plan for working families, on July 21, 2020, in New Castle, Delaware. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP) (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden is being presented by his supporters as a return to normalcy, a response to the unorthodox tenure of the Trump administration. His plaudits describe the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee as honest, trustworthy, consistent. This is demonstrably untrue. The only aspect of Biden’s political career that would be aptly described as “consistent” is his willingness to flip-flop on significant positions and principles. Here are five major issues on which Biden has reversed his position over the years.

1. Violent Crime

With race relations worsening, and sections of cities like Minneapolis and Atlanta burning to the ground in the wake of “protests,” Joe Biden has been forced to cower to the demands of the far-left Black Lives Matter organization, even if it means denying both reality and his greatest political achievement.

As ranking minority member of the Senate Judiciary Committee since 1981, Joe Biden helped pass two bills that established mandatory minimums for drug offenses. When he became chairman of the committee in 1987, he “told aides his goal was to enact legislation that would take a comprehensive approach to reducing crime” as the country battled with an ongoing violent crime epidemic. In 1994, President Clinton signed the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act into law. As the largest crime bill in the history of the United States, it provided for 100,000 new police officers, $9.7 billion in funding for prisons, and $6.1 billion in funding for prevention programs.

When Clinton was questioned on this policy in 2016, he responded with an answer rooted in reality. “Because of that bill we had a 25-year low in crime, a 30-year low in the murder rate, and because of that and the background-check law, a 46-year low in deaths of lives by gun violence and who do you think those lives were that mattered? Whose lives were?”

However, critics of the program often reference its impact on “mass incarceration,” with the Justice Policy Institute stating that “the Clinton Administration’s ‘tough on crime’ policies resulted in the largest increases in federal and state inmate populations of any president in American history.”

Amid the growing anti-police sentiment among the Left, Biden has chosen to abandon what is seen by many as the successful culmination of his fight against crime.

Biden, who once gave passionate speeches on the Senate floor arguing that one could be a “progressive” and “lock the SOBs up” now states that it was a “big mistake when it was made.”

To double down on his rejection of the bill and instead signal his fealty to the demands of the woke Left, Biden has recently deflected criticism for his role, stating that “There’s something we have to admit – not you – we, white America, has to admit, there’s still a systematic racism and it goes almost unnoticed by so many of us.”

For some reason, the fact that Biden helped build this system during his more than three decades-long senatorial career then failed to address it in a meaningful way during his 8 years as vice president goes “unnoticed” by his supporters.

2. China

One of the pillars of Donald Trump’s foreign policy, both as a candidate and as President, has been to rail against the threat posed by China.

In June of 2019, Biden appeared to agree with Trump’s general assessment, while simultaneously repackaging Trump’s very criticism as having provoked such tensions. (We should note that this flawed cyclic logic is being used as we speak to condemn Trump’s use of federal officers to quell the explosion of violence across the country.)

“We are in a competition with China. We need to get tough with China,” said Biden. “They are a serious challenge to us, and in some areas a real threat. And every single step that Donald Trump is taking is only exacerbating the challenge. While Trump is tweeting, China is making massive investments in technologies of the future. While Trump is name-calling, China is building roads, bridges, and high-speed rail. While Trump is pursuing a damaging and erratic trade war, without any real strategy, China is positioning itself to lead the world in renewable energy. While Trump is attacking our friends, China is pressing its advantage all over the world. So you bet I’m worried about China — if we keep following Trump’s path.”

Such sudden and vocal concern would shock anyone who heard Biden speak on the same subject just a few weeks earlier.

“China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man,” he said. “They can’t even figure out how to deal with the fact that they have this great division between the China Sea and the mountains in the east — I mean the west. They can’t figure out how they’re going to deal with the corruption that exists within the system. They’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what? They’re not competition for us.”

For Biden, his inconsistent position regarding the United States’ most formidable enemy is deeply troubling, further plagued by accusations of impropriety regarding the business dealings of his unscrupulous son Hunter.

It’s one thing to have a bad foreign policy. It’s another to have two foreign policies.

3. Abortion

For decades, Biden voted in what would now be considered an anti-abortion manner.

In 1976 Joe Biden voted for the Hyde Amendment, which prevents the use of federal funds for abortion in almost all cases. He then voted to save it in 1993. The Foreign Assistance Act of 1981 still contains a “Biden amendment” which was added “to ban American aid from being used in research related to abortions.” Biden advocated for the ability of states to overturn Roe vs. Wade, was in favor of the “Mexico City policy,” which prevented federal funds from being allocated to organizations which provided or expanded abortion services, and has voted for partial-birth abortion bans on two occasions.

With the dystopian celebration of abortion built into the foundation of the modern Democratic platform, the Joe Biden of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s could never survive.

Aiming to pivot on the definition and value of life, Biden offered this vapid explanation for his decision to oppose the Hyde Amendment at a Planned Parenthood event in 2019.

“I laid out a health care plan that’s going to provide federally funded health care for all women and women who now are denied even Medicare in their home states,” he explained. “It became really clear to me that although the Hyde Amendment was designed to try to split the difference here, to make sure women still had access, you can’t have access if everyone’s covered by a federal policy. That’s why at the same time I announced that policy, I announced that I could no longer continue to abide by the Hyde Amendment. That’s the reason.”

During that same event, Biden stated that he would work to “enshrine into federal law the Roe v. WadeSupreme Court decision upholding abortion rights” — a verdict he had described as “wrongly decided” in 1973, and that “went too far” in 1974.

When it comes to the subject of abortion, Biden’s history of opposition is as clear as the Left’s uncompromising attitude towards the “human right” to take the lives of unborn humans. This leaves him with no option but to answer questions on his clear “mixed record” with his trademark confused vagary. “First of all, I’m not sure about the ‘mixed record’ part.”

4. Gay Marriage

When Biden discusses the subject of gay rights, we are often told the story of his father explaining that “Joey, it’s simple. They love each other” after the teenage Joe witnessed two men kissing in public. However, this sweet yet overly simplistic story is often used as a cover for a far more complicated history.

Speaking to a gay activist in 1973, Biden stated, “My gut reaction is that they (homosexuals) are security risks but I must admit I haven’t given this much thought…I’ll be darned!”

In 1994, Biden voted to cut off funding for schools which taught the acceptance of homosexuality, and in 1996, Biden voted in favor of the Defense of Marriage Act, which blocked federal recognition of same-sex marriages. As recently as 2006, Joe Biden confirmed his position that “marriage is between a man and a woman.”

Just a few years later, Biden was lauded for his “evolution” on the subject of gay rights when he appeared to go against the Obama administration by expressing that he was “comfortable” with same-sex marriage.

“I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men marrying women are entitled to the same exact rights,” he said. “All the civil rights, all the civil liberties. And quite frankly I don’t see much of a distinction beyond that.”

One must ask why, if Biden’s father was right in saying that “it’s simple,” he waited until the Democratic Party chose to institute a monumental shift and fully embraced the umbrella of issues beneath the LGBTQ+ banner to change his mind. Perhaps his other statement, “I haven’t given this much thought…I’ll be darned!” is more fitting?

5. Believe Women

Biden perfectly encapsulates the sporadic hypocrisy of the #MeToo movement. When Brett Kavanaugh was accused of multiple sexual assaults in 2016, memories of Justice Thomas’ confirmation hearings in 1991 resurfaced.

During that time, Biden led an “all-white, all-male Judiciary Committee” as Anita Hill “was grilled in excruciatingly graphic detail.”

Years later, bending to the demands of the #MeToo movement in the aftermath of Justice Kavanaugh’s eerily similar confirmation, Biden sought to erase his involvement in Hill’s questioning by offering an apology.

In 2019, when questioned on whether he believed Hill’s claims, Biden pandered to the absurd demand that we must “Believe All Women.”

“Oh, I thought she was telling the truth at the beginning. I really did,” said Biden. “For a woman to come forward in the glaring lights of focus, nationally, you’ve got to start off with the presumption that at least the essence of what she’s talking about is real, whether or not she forgets facts, whether or not it’s been made worse or better over time. But nobody fails to understand that this is like jumping into a cauldron.”

Oddly, when Tara Reade — a woman — jumped into a “cauldron” lit by the “glaring lights of focus” during a national presidential battle in March 2020 and accused Biden of sexual assault, she wasn’t believed.

Rejecting the presumption of truthfulness demanded by Biden, he personally denied the allegations, stating that “it never, never happened.”

Biden is not the first, and presumably won’t be the last, Democrat to be accused of sexual assault. He may be guilty. He may be innocent. What we do know, however, is that when a politician like Biden utters ridiculous phrases like “Believe Women,” he won’t play by his own rules.


Biden believes that China is a harmless threat. Biden believes that Roe vs. Wade was wrongly decided but should also be codified into law. Biden believes that homosexuals are security risks who should have the right to marry. Biden believes that we should “lock the SOBs up” and that incarceration is evidence of “systemic racism.” Finally, Joe Biden believes some women. Pro-Biden politicos and media attempt to portray Biden as consistent, honest, and reliable to the American people. His record tells quite a different story.

More from Ian Haworth: What ‘Herd Immunity’ Teaches Us About Freedom

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