Media scolds Biden over 'race-baiting' voting laws remark during 'hypocritical, demagogic' Georgia speech

‘The Five’ blasts Biden’s attack on Senate filibuster

‘The Five’ panel reacts to President Biden’s Georgia remarks over election changes.

Critics continue to hammer President Joe Biden for his “race-baiting” comments made during a controversial speech this week in Georgia about Democrats’ proposed voting rights laws. 

“Biden is one of the worst race-baiting people ever in the WH. It was bad enough when he said the GOP wanted to put black Americans ‘back in chains,’” Fox News contributor Ari Fleischer tweeted on Thursday. “Now he says disagreeing w him on voting laws means you’re a segregationist, like George Wallace or Bull Connor. How low can he go?”

Fleischer was the latest high-profile critic of Biden after he warned of a stark dichotomy between the proponents and opponents of the Democrats’ election law overhaul bill dubbed the “John Lewis Voting Rights Act.” 

The unpopular president asked a crowd in Atlanta on Tuesday whether they were on the side of reviled figures like segregationist Gov. George Wallace and Confederate President Jefferson Davis, or on the side of civil rights leaders Martin Luther King Jr. and the late John Lewis.

Biden’s polarizing remarks irked members of the media and lawmakers alike, with Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., declaring he was “offended” by the divisive speech. 

“It’s offensive to me as a Southerner, but more importantly, it’s offensive to me as an American,” Scott told “The Story” host Martha MacCallum.

Critics continue to hammer President Joe Biden for his "race-baiting" comments made Tuesday in Georgia.
(Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Many pundits echoed Sen. Scott and Fleischer, with New York Post columnist John Podhoretz penning a scathing piece about Biden’s “hypocritical, demagogic” speech.

“Congratulations to Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, the two Democratic senators who have made it plain they will not vote to kill the filibuster. By not following him in lockstep, they are no better than the man who turned hoses on peaceful protesters in Birmingham,” Podhoretz wrote. 

Podhoretz feels Biden truly “isn’t mad at Manchin and Sinema because of voting rights,” but instead because they rejected his Build Back Better bill.

“Because BBB is basically dead, and because his COVID administration is incompetent, and because inflation is going bananas, Biden is staring political catastrophe in the face,” Podhoretz wrote. “And so here it is — the pivot! Pivot to voting rights! Scare base Democratic voters, especially African Americans, into turning out in November 2022 by saying what he said in 2012 about Mitt Romney and the GOP — that they want ‘to put y’all back in chains.’”

Indeed, as Fleischer and Podhoretz both noted, Biden raised eyebrows back in 2012 when he told a Virginia crowd the Republican Party wanted to put voters “in chains” when discussing the impact of deregulating Wall Street and the financial industry. 

Biden’s speech Tuesday was also lampooned by the National Review as “pathetic as it was demagogic” in a piece headlined simply “What is Biden thinking?” by Washington correspondent John McCormack.

“On paper, it’s hard to think of a worse insult than lumping half the country (or more) into the same camp as racists and traitors,” McCormack wrote.

Many others had thoughts on Biden’s remarks: 

“What you saw there [in Georgia on Tuesday] was a guy who wants to federalize elections. He’s splitting the country in half with divisive, earsplitting rhetoric like a dementia-riddled transient shouting at clouds,” Greg Gutfeld added on “The Five.” 

Fox News’ Yael Halon and Charles Creitz contributed to this report. 

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