Biden buying votes to ensure re-election – and here's how you're paying for it

No president has ever tried to buy votes like Joe Biden. 

The president is steering tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars in federal spending toward communities that are more likely to support him in the election, especially racial and ethnic groups, all under the guise of fighting climate change.

But Congress didn’t authorize this unprecedented patronage. President Biden is corrupting constitutional government even as he greases the skids of his own re-election.

While every president uses federal spending to secure political benefits, Biden’s actions are both the most targeted and sweeping in American history. 

BIDEN LAUNCHES BILLION-DOLLAR CLIMATE WORK PROGRAM AS PART OF EARTH DAY ACTIONS

He launched this effort shortly after taking office, signing an executive order in January 2021 on “tackling the climate crisis at home and abroad.” The order created a “Justice40” initiative, mandating that 40% of “certain Federal investments… flow to disadvantaged communities.” 

More than three years later, this initiative covers much of the spending in Biden’s signature laws, including the Inflation Reduction Act, Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the American Rescue Plan, as well as hundreds of existing federal programs.

The amount of money involved is staggering. The infrastructure law alone devotes $68 billion to programs covered by Justice40. Existing programs already had funding streams in the billions of dollars.

When other laws and annual appropriations are added in, the Biden administration is likely spending more than $100 billion – and potentially far more – on initiatives that must now devote four of every 10 taxpayer dollars to “disadvantaged” communities.

BIDEN ADMIN LOCKS $6B IN CLIMATE FUNDING BEHIND DEI, INCLUSIVITY REQUIREMENTS

The Biden administration created and ordered government agencies to use a “screening tool” map showing which parts of the country should get this money. The map identifies census tracts that are “overburdened and underserved” on a variety of measures.

These “Justice40 communities,” as the administration calls them, are targeted because they, among other things, have higher dependency, have fewer English speakers, struggle with health conditions like diabetes, and are generally “distressed,” among other considerations.

This is a thinly veiled attempt to direct money to minority communities – a fact that the Biden administration never explicitly says but effectively admits with language about “equitable distribution,” “environmental justice,” and references to tribes and segregation. 

In effect, Justice40 relies on a crude form of racial profiling to decide who gets billions of dollars in taxpayer money. Most minority communities vote Democratic, some of them overwhelmingly so.

BIDEN’S TRILLION DOLLAR CLIMATE AGENDA IS BLOWING UP AND JOHN KERRY HAS A LOT TO ANSWER FOR

The dollars are already flowing. The first Justice40 programs were 21 pilot programs launched in Biden’s first year in office. The list included Housing and Urban Development’s Healthy Homes Grants, Energy’s Advanced Manufacturing Office, and Homeland Security’s Flood Mitigation Assistance Program, among others. Many of the programs were either tangentially related to climate change or not related at all.

The bait-and-switch became even more obvious in 2022 when the Biden administration expanded Justice40 to cover more than 400 federal programs. The list includes everything from rural rental assistance to minority workforce training, elderly housing to passenger ferry grants, the Job Corps to lead exposure in Flint, Michigan, and more. 

The Biden administration has also said that Justice40 covers a wide variety of programs that provide “federal financial assistance,” including grants, loans and benefits to individuals. Huge swaths of the federal government are now funding the communities Biden needs for re-election.

BIDEN ADMIN FUNNELS $1 BILLION FOR CLIMATE PROGRAMS AT BORDERS AMID ONGOING MIGRANT CRISIS

While the Biden administration has listed eligible funding streams, it hasn’t said where each dollar is going – a major violation of government transparency. Dozens of federal agencies are now spending billions of dollars outside the public eye, raising obvious questions about political motivations and machinations. 

But the bigger problem is that Congress didn’t authorize Justice40 or any such focus on “disadvantaged communities.”

When Congress created the Dairy Margin Coverage program, lawmakers didn’t intend it to subsidize minority farmers or any other specific group beyond farmers generally. When they tasked the Forest Service with building recreation sites, they didn’t have ethnicity or income in mind. When the Rural Housing Service was given authority to hand out single-family-housing direct loans, the goal was to help needy people of all backgrounds, not prioritize some groups over others. 

In program after program, the Biden administration is taking what Congress made and turning it into what the president wants.

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But what does Biden want most, but a second term in the Oval Office? America is witnessing a whole-of-government effort to reward communities that are vital voting blocs for the president. More taxpayer money heads their way every day, with billions of dollars in the queue. 

And if Biden wins re-election, this campaign will continue well into the future. His administration has already made clear that the list of Justice40 programs will “evolve over time as new federal programs are created,” and existing programs will likely receive ongoing funding. 

You can bet Biden will continue to extend and initiate programs that can funnel more money to potential political supporters.

But at what cost? This isn’t about climate change, nor is it about helping disadvantaged communities. It’s about giving an unprecedented political advantage to the president of the United States.

Biden isn’t just buying votes with taxpayer money. He’s buying votes at the expense of constitutional government.

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Eric Bledsoe is a senior fellow at the Foundation for Government Accountability.

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