Don’t compromise on this: Send the money to everyone

Biden is in danger of making the same mistake as his former boss

Michael Greiner
4 min readFeb 4, 2021


President Joe Biden taking the oath of office. By Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies. Wikipedia.

Ah compromise.

Somehow, this procedural approach to negotiation has been elevated to a policy goal by some who lack conviction. Democrats, of course, always quick to try to make people happy, jump when offered a “compromise” which is often nothing more than a watered-down version of what is really needed.

The latest gambit by a few “moderate” Republican Senators, only one of whom voted to remove Trump from office, is nothing more than “less.” Rather than Biden’s $1.9 trillion proposal, they suggest a coronavirus relief bill of only $650 million. Why $650 million? Why not $1.9 trillion? There is no logical argument for their position, no reason for that specific amount of money, other than that they want to offer families in need and struggling states and small businesses less.

Mitch McConnell, of course, offers crocodile tears over the fact that many Democrats are nonplussed over this deeply unserious offer. How dare the Democrats, says he, to have the temerity to use the same process to pass coronavirus relief in the midst of a national crisis that he used to pass the Trump tax give-away to the rich.

That tax bill, by the way, that really only benefited the very rich and did little to help the economy, had a cost of $2.3 trillion. All these “moderate” senators who were in office at the time voted for that tax bill, not balking for a second over the multi-trillion dollars being added to our national debt to hand to the very rich. And yet, God forbid we do something that helps everyone in their times of need.

The truth is that McConnell and his ilk only roll out the “compromise” argument when they are out of power. When in power, they have no interest in that vague concept. Just ask the man who would be Supreme Court Justice Merrick Garland how well compromise works in Mitch McConnell’s world.

Compromise is not just a vacuous concept and a poor substitute for policy, it is just bad politics. As Larry David said, “a good compromise is when both parties are dissatisfied.” But politics is about making people happy, ideally most people, at a minimum some people. But you will never…



Michael Greiner

Mike is an Assistant Professor of Management for Legal and Ethical Studies at Oakland U. Mike combines his scholarship with practical experience in politics.