On March 31, organizations from across Western Pennsylvania gathered in downtown Pittsburgh to demand action on the many broken promises of the Biden administration. As he visited the city in his latest effort to utilize it as a mascot for his infrastructure plan, the Party for Socialism and Liberation joined with over 20 other groups for a rally. While Biden promises to fix many of the problems the Trump administration created and “build back better”, protesters said they will not settle for anything less than full accountability for the many failures, broken promises and human rights abuses thus far in his administration.
Since Biden began campaigning for the presidency, he focused on Pittsburgh as symbol of his promises to rebuild infrastructure and bring jobs to the working class. After ending his campaign in the Steel City, it certainly made sense that he returned to boast about what he is calling a ‘once-in-a-century’ plan to invest in many different areas surrounding infrastructure. While the talking points for this plan include a focus on rural areas, reversing the negative affects that poor environmental policy has had on communities oppressed by racism and assisting the working class, his relatively short time in office has already broken many promises to these very same people.
Speakers at the event provided personal, environmental, domestic, and international examples of the harm done by the Biden administration. This included failing to take action on raising the minimum wage, its refusal to take serious and immediate action on environmental policy with a Green New Deal, continuing the never-ending imperialist interventions against other nations — such as Syria and Haiti — and continually pushing anti-China rhetoric and propaganda that has helped to fuel the racist attacks on Asian people.
Rally speaker June Wearden, a member of the Pittsburgh branch of the Party for Socialism and Liberation, pointed out specific failures of the current administration, connecting Pittsburgh’s current moment in the spotlight to its history of working-class struggle. As both Trump and Biden pushed to make Pittsburgh a focal point in their presidencies, Weardon countered: “Our job as progressive people is to show the city, the whole country, that there is another path forward … We know that it will not be easy, but we understand it is the only way to create a country in which the PEOPLE rule, not a small group of wealthy capitalists and their lackeys.”