Manchin throws a lifeline …

Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) continues to demonstrate he is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.  From the beginning of President Joe Biden’s administration, Manchin has acted as a gatekeeper of sorts for any policy.  Too frequently, he has denied his party’s ambitions for spending packages which might be transformative for the country (or the next waste of taxpayer money).  

Manchin (left) and Schumer (right) worked out a deal against all odds

With the 2022 Midterm Elections just a few months away, Manchin surprised nearly everyone by agreeing to a spending bill that will revive what appeared to be a stalled Biden agenda.  Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) spent weeks negotiating what is now referred to as The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022.  The legislation could be a boon for the nation and more importantly, shore up a fractured Democratic Party at a time when it appeared headed towards losing control of Congress.

So what’s in this bill?

As the title of the bill suggests, its primary aim is to curb the level of inflation that has been a significant problem for the nation.  In 2021, inflation stood at 7% and for 2022, it’s currently at 9.1%.  Price increases have been most noticeable in terms of gas and groceries — commodities which are ‘must haves.’   At one point, average gas prices rose to over $5 per gallon, a historically high rate for Americans.  Stress levels are high and the word recession has been tossed around.

  • First, the government will put in place a minimum corporate tax of 15%, which the Joint Committee on Taxation estimates will add over $313 billion to the government’s tax revenue.  This will reportedly ‘close the loophole’ which allows multinational corporations to avoid paying their corporate taxes in the United States.
  • The legislation will also allow the federal government to negotiate prices Medicare will pay with drug companies, something both major parties have supported as a cost saving measure.  The Congressional Budget Office estimate suggests this will save $288 billion over the next decade.
  • Subsidies for the health insurance plans of lower-income Americans will be extended under the Affordable Care Act by an additional $64 billion over the next three years.
  • More liberal Democrats will be pleased with the sizable investment into clean energy and cuts to carbon emissions.  The government would extend tax credits for electric vehicles, solar panels, and other forms of machines which utilize cleaner forms of energy.  Tax credits would also be offered to manufacturing facilities which become ‘greener’ in their approaches.  With all forms of tax credits and government spending on cleaner forms of energy and reclamation, the federal government is committing over $380 billion to climate change.  Moreover, independent researchers believe the bill could reduce carbon emissions by 40% in the next decade.

What impact will it have on inflation and elections?

The bill’s individual pieces aim to reduce costs for spending in the necessities of life.  Even with insurance, health care costs place a significant burden on Americans.  Any illness which requires hospitalization, surgery, or long term treatment can financially break aa family.  Reducing these costs for some of the most vulnerable through ACA subsidies and Medicare savings helps the bottom line.

Creating cleaner forms of energy and an infrastructure for them will decrease the demand fossil fuels, and lower prices.  American foreign policy will also factor into fuel prices.  The Russo-Ukrainian War prompted our nation and European allies to cut economic ties with Russia for their unprovoked invasion.  Russia’s status as the second leading producer of oil and the second leading producer of natural gas means the entire world is experiencing a problem with fuel prices.  The resolution of that conflict will lead to an increased supply of oil and gas, which will undoubtedly lower prices on those commodities. 

US Bureau of Labor inflation numbers on the Consumer Price Index, last 12 months

The Inflation Reduction Act isn’t a stand-alone measure, though.  The Federal Reserve Board recently approved an increase in the interest rate from 1.75% to 2.5%, in the hopes of slowing down the overall economy.  The effect on banks and their lending is yet to be seen, but typically consumers respond to increased rates by dialing back their desires for major purchases (auto and home).  

Republicans have hammered Democrats and the Biden administration for the inflation rates and they hope to see a major shift in government control in this year’s midterm elections.  With Democrats currently clinging to slim majorities in both chambers of Congress, the GOP sees an opportunity for creating a divided government.  They would, at the very least, have the ability to block the Biden administration’s goals for the next two years.

Until June, it appeared the GOP had all the ammunition it would need for a solid performance in the midterm elections.  However, this summer brought some unexpected life to Democrats.  A recent decrease in gas prices is encouraging, with national per gallon averages down from $5.03 to $4.67.  For those in the Mountain State, current averages have been hovering around $4.30 in the last week.  

One would also have to believe Democratic candidates for office will receive a boost in support after the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health.  That decision, which overturned the right to an abortion, has energized the left.  It just so happens that overturning a 50 year old precedent and centerpiece of liberal belief can shock people into action.  

In case folks haven’t been paying attention in West Virginia, the Legislature is on fire with activity.  Pro-choice supporters rallied to object to new legislation which would govern what, if any, circumstances a woman could have an abortion.  One would almost have to expect an uptick in voter turnout this year.

And then, Joe Manchin entered the chat.  West Virginia’s conservative-yet-Democrat senator threw his party the support they have wanted for the last two years.  This spending bill is not only a legislative victory for the Biden administration and the party, but a measure which will do what Republicans haven’t done.  This bill will reduce the federal deficit by $300 billion in the next decade.  Republicans have consistently talked a good game on spending and deficits, but it’s the Democrats who are doing the heavy lifting.  

The Inflation Reduction Act gives liberal candidates a measure of crossover appeal to more moderate voters.  The legislation becomes more meaningful in terms of its timing.  At this point in the election season, Republicans were content to ‘run out the clock’ and not pass anything which might help President Biden and his party.  The fact that Joe Manchin consistently rebuffed his own party meant nothing was likely to happen and Republicans could claim the left lacked the ability combat inflation and other key problems the country faces.

When Manchin signed on to this bill, he effectively gave his party a lifeline that they desperately needed.

Why did Manchin agree to this?

Manchin likely has multiple reasons for signing on to this piece of legislation, notably the fact that helping his party increases the chances he stays in a position of importance for the next two years.  As long as the partisan balance in the Senate remains so close, Manchin’s position as a sort of swing vote remains in tact.  Legislation from either party would need his seal of approval.  Also, maintaining a Democratic majority means Manchin retains his position as the Chair of the Committee of Energy and Natural Resources.  Manchin’s party might also have put increasing pressure on him, as he noted he supported the bill, in part, because he didn’t want to “disappoint people again.”

Manchin’s support for the bill also connects to its help for West Virginia.  Included in the spending is a permanent extension for the Black Lung Disability Fund, which provides medical care for coal miners affected by black lung.  West Virginia also has the fourth highest median age for any state, and our seniors will benefit from changes to Medicare.  Manchin’s home state also has the fourth highest poverty rate, meaning its citizens will benefit from ACA subsidies and a potential decrease in inflation rates.

Perhaps most importantly, the investment into greener energy and reduction in carbon emissions will be a positive step for a state who might finally see that coal consumption is declining.  The state needs viable alternatives for the coal industry in the future.  This bill does not do away with coal, but could help to diversify West Virginia’s economy.  

Tack on the fact that the predicted overall net effect of the bill is a reduction in the federal deficit, and it’s a no-brainer for Manchin.  

Are there any downsides to this bill?

Economies are never quite like a science laboratory.  Too many variables exist and government officials have no control over most of them.  It’s possible that the result of the experiment isn’t quite what the experts predict.  Even then, not all experts agree about what the bill might do for inflation rates.  

The name of the legislation seems more like a misnomer.  Its impact will ease financial burdens on some of the more vulnerable sectors of American society, but the law itself may not move the needle much on inflation rates.  Monetary policy tools like the adjustment of interest rates and changes in money supply must be properly utilized in conjunction with fiscal policies.  

Furthermore, the larger factors which contributed to the rise of inflation remain unresolved.

The growth of the money supply in 2020 was significant, to say the least

The growth of the American money supply during the Covid shutdown in 2020 was an unheard of economic response and the single greatest increase in money supply in the nation’s history.  While people of good conscience can debate whether or not it was needed at the time, there’s no doubt that the action injected so much money into the economy, that businesses naturally responded by increasing prices.  While the Federal Reserve Banks are working to correct this problem, it cannot, nor should it, remove that excess cash all at once.

The broken supply chains from the Covid shutdown have contributed to the inflation problems.  The demand for various goods and services never changed but the world’s ability to move the necessary products for those goods and services diminished and has yet to return to normal.  When the same demand exists for less of the commodities people want, prices rise.

Finally, until the Russo-Ukrainian War ends with Russia withdrawing its forces, much of the world will continue to boycott Russian coal, oil, and natural gas.  This will put a strain on fuel costs worldwide (though OPEC is increasing its output to offset these issues).

The Honeymoon is Over: The future of Biden agenda

ike most marriages, a presidential administration begins with a warm, fuzzy feeling of hope.  When President Joe Biden took the oath of office on January 20th, he brought a breath of fresh air after four years of poor policy decisions.  Once a president takes office, he still must govern effectively. 

The road ain’t as long as President Biden would like

The administration’s first 100 days were filled with successes and hope for the the coming year.  President Biden scored a policy victory by passing The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which authorized $1.9 trillion of spending on COVID relief and assisted in the distribution of vaccine delivery.  The administration reached its goal of vaccinating 100 million Americans within the first 100 days of the president’s term.  American citizens received a stimulus check.  The economy added jobs in recovering from the COVID shutdown.  President Biden’s approval ratings hovered in the 60-something range.  Supporters of the administration mentioned the president’s name in the same breath as Franklin Roosevelt.

The Biden administration hoped to parlay early victories into support for a broad sweeping infrastructure bill known as The American Jobs Plan.  Democrats also proposed a bold attempt at reforming the nation’s elections laws in the For The People Act, which would have likely ended partisan gerrymandering, changed campaign finance laws, and established nationalized standards for ballots and voting procedures.  Maybe he is or isn’t FDR, but you can’t say President Biden isn’t swinging for the fences.

In politics, however, even early victories in an administration sometimes can’t produce enough political capital to govern in the way he or she would like.  And unfortunately for this administration (and probably the nation as a whole), the honeymoon is over for President Biden and America. 

The problems add up

President Biden’s agenda has always hinged on the elimination of the filibuster in the Senate.  The practice of stalling a bill to death means 60 votes are required to push legislation forward.  However, changing Senate rules to end the filibuster only requires 50 votes (Vice President Kamala Harris holds the tie-breaking vote in an evenly divided Senate).  Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has refused to vote in favor ending the filibuster, dealing a significant blow to the Biden administration. 


Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) advanced the For The People Act though Democrats had always understood it would not pass.  A vote only served to put senators on the record about where they stood on the matter.  The measured failed on a 50-50 vote where no one crossed party lines.

With the voting rights legislation out of the picture for the foreseeable future, President Biden and his team turned their attention to the infrastructure bill.  The Senate could pass the measure using the reconciliation process (a procedure which only requires a majority of votes if the bill relates to spending / budget issues).  It’s how Democrats passed the The American Rescue Plan.  Yet, Senator Manchin threw a wrench in the works again.  West Virginia’s senior senator did not want to use the reconciliation process to pass a bill unless at least one Republican senator would vote for the bill.  Manchin has always maintained that the nation needs to work on reestablishing bipartisanship. 

In that spirit of bipartisanship, Manchin has attempted and succeeded in brokering a deal which will involve support from at least 11 Republicans, including Rob Portman (R-OH) and Mitt Romney (R-UT).  This bill would spend $579 billion immediately and add additional money over the next decade to address a number of infrastructure projects which the nation desperately needs.  

President Biden’s agenda seems to have stalled

So, isn’t this a good thing?  Not exactly for the Biden administration the context of this article.  The politics of who receives credit for this infrastructure bill matters.  The 21 Democrats and Republicans in Congress have a chance to raise their profiles and let everyone know they made it happen, and the president was along for the ride.  Moreover, the bill has crossover appeal amongst the moderates of both parties, but the more liberal wing of the Democrats has expressed frustration over it.  

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) spoke of her frustration with bipartisan deals, noting, “… when these bipartisan deals come together, they tend to underserve the communities that are already underserved …”  

Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), perhaps the most liberal in Congress, also didn’t seem too keen about this bill.  Sanders and other members of the more progressive wing of the party believe the term ‘infrastructure’ should include pieces such as climate change, paid family leave, foster care, and funds dedicated to health care.

Members of Congress in the more liberal wing felt a sense of relief when the White House stated they would pursue a two-bill tandem process, which would include a reconciliation budget bill to take up the issues not included in the infrastructure compromise.   The president almost inadvertently torpedoed the entire thing by implying he would veto the infrastructure bill without support for the budget bill.  He later clarified that he would not veto the compromise bill.

The bill isn’t a done deal, and a revolt from his own party isn’t out of the question, and this might be more damaging to his administration than if Republicans kept stonewalling in the Senate.


President Biden also must contend with a growing number of mass shootings across the country.  At the halfway point of this year, more than 270 mass shootings have occurred.  The president’s ability to respond to gun violence is limited to executive orders and these cannot supersede law.  Making any meaningful change to gun policy would require new legislation and Republicans will not yield on this issue.

The president’s accomplishments with regard to vaccine distribution and economic relief seem like a distant memory for most Americans.  Most of the Americans who wanted a COVID vaccine have probably already received one, and stimulus money is long gone.  Throw in a heat wave that is crushing the Northwest and other ‘normal’ problems and no one cares about the fact that unemployment numbers were down in May.

Earlier this year, President Biden tasked Vice President Harris with focusing on the crisis on the southern border and that situation has not improved.  The number of illegal crossings hit a record high in March, and initially, analysts believed those numbers might decrease.  However, the numbers for April and May have eclipsed the record set in March.  Each of the last three months has seen more than 170,000 illegal crossings.  

Vice President Harris complicated matters when dropped the ball in an interview with NBC’s Lester Holt.  When confronted with a question about why she had not been to the border to personally visit, Vice President Harris responded in a flummoxed manner, “And I haven’t been to Europe … And, I mean, I don’t understand the point that you’re making. I’m not discounting the importance of the border.”  It didn’t go over well with anyone.  

What’s holding back the Biden agenda?

1.  A divided Senate — When President Biden took office this year, he did so with a slight majority in the House of Representatives and an evenly divided 50-50 Senate.  This limits his ability to persuade Congress to act.  When Franklin Roosevelt took office, Democrats held 58 of the 96 Senate seats and 311 of the 435 House seats.  In the advent of Lyndon Johnson’s administration, his party controlled 65 Senate seats and 268 House seats.  Barack Obama’s initial numbers were 60 and 256, respectively.  Modern presidents who were known for substantially advancing legislation had an easier path to establishing meaningful policies because they had Congress’ backing.  Without a unified government, any president will struggle. 

2.  Heightened partisanship — The degree to which members of both major parties stick to their tribe affects the Biden agenda, or any president’s agenda.  Members of Congress are too scared to deviate from the official party line.  Democratic and Republican leaders have made it clear they are willing to punish members who go too far off the reservation.  You can believe that Republican leadership made this principle quite clear when they removed Liz Cheney (R-WY) from leadership after her criticism of former President Donald Trump.  Party officials also hold sway over committee assignments, campaign finances, and potential primary challenges.  Only a few members, such as Joe Manchin, have any immunity to this.  If Democrats, for instance, wanted to fund a primary challenger against Manchin, he would only benefit from this.  West Virginia’s generally conservative nature would view a primary challenge against Manchin as a sign that he’s doing the right things.  Also, Manchin’s age must be factored in.  He isn’t facing re-election until 2024 and at that point, he might retire.  He’s one of the rare members of Congress who is as close to bulletproof as you can be.  However, Manchin is the exception and not the rule.

With the 2022 mid-term elections right around the corner, both parties understand what’s at stake.  Democrats need more legislative victories to cement their hold on both houses of Congress (and free them from the tyranny of Joe Manchin).  Republicans hope to stall out the rest of this front half of Biden’s term, with the premise of telling voters that the president did not deliver.  The 2022 mid-terms mean both parties have incentives not to stray from the party line.

3.  Joe Manchin — On one hand, I really like Manchin because, in many ways, he represents a number of political ideas I like.  He’s an old-school Democrat and that’s where I fit in, but he’s also (unintentionally) obstructing policies which an administration has a right to implement when they occupy the White House.  The tactics of the minority party’s ‘run out the clock’ mantra have to change, and Joe Manchin isn’t helping that.  The divided Senate wouldn’t be an issue if Manchin would vote to eliminate the filibuster.  It would be less of an issue if he would be willing to vote for the reconciliation process.  

4. The short memory of voters — American voters only see what’s right in front of them, and the present situation shows us problems and inefficiency. Republicans have more than a decent chance to reclaim both houses of Congress in 2022 and a plausible reason is that the American public won’t remember the positive changes that arrived with the Biden administration. You can see this in a slow decline of President Biden’s approval ratings. The president’s political capital is drying up and there is little room for significant legislation to move forward until after the Election of 2022.

Punched in the mouth: No scripted presidency for Biden

“Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” 

— Mike Tyson, former heavyweight boxing champion 

Mike Tyson was asked about an upcoming fight with Evander Holyfield, another great heavyweight champion, specifically as to how Tyson would try to disrupt Holyfield’s fight plan.  This is when Tyson uttered his now famous maxim about taking a punch to the mouth.  That was part of Tyson’s fight strategy all the time.  He hit them with such power and ferocity that most fighters would freeze in the moment and their plans would crumble under the weight of a devastating uppercut.  

President Joe Biden’s administration now faces its first real punches in the mouth.  Through the president’s first 100 days, few major challenges presented themselves.  Members of the Republican Party threw a few jabs, just feeling out the new chief executive.  Now into a steady rhythm, the administration is absorbing a few power shots that will try to throw Biden and his team off balance.  

The jab 

The latest and perhaps most devastating setback for Team Biden is the latest jobs report.  In April, the United States added 266,000 jobs, according to the Department of Labor.  That doesn’t sound too bad until you consider that analysts predicted a significantly higher number, about four times that number to be more precise.  Unemployment rose slightly from 6.0% to 6.1% and the jobs numbers from March were revised (to 770,000 jobs added and down from the original estimate of 916,000).  This is definitely not the news the administration hoped to see.

Though the president cannot single-handedly control the economy (for good reason), he or she takes credit when the country prospers (re:  Bill Clinton) and also bears the blame when the economy spirals out of control (poor Herbert Hoover).  This is part of the game, so to speak.  

So what’s the play for the administration?  The jobs report obviously gives the GOP ammunition, but the president and his people should spin this as simply one month’s worth of data, and the long term predictions for economic growth still show a positive trend.  Moreover, this is an opportunity for Biden to stress the need for his infrastructure bill, which could establish millions of jobs.  

The right cross 

The problem of the jobs report will dissolve with the next news cycle, though it stings.  A greater problem has been brewing at the southern border of the United States, and thus far, it’s the serious threat to The White House’s agenda.  So far, the administration has not used the term ‘crisis,’ but it’s a crisis.  Previous presidential administrations have consistently passed down this problem to their successors, and that’s unfortunate, but the problem belongs to Biden and he must own it.

Migrants came across the border in record number in April 2021

In March, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection tallied over 170,000 encounters and apprehensions of migrants illegally entering the country.  This staggering figure represents the most in a 20 year time frame, and stretches manpower thin.  The numbers for each of the first four months of Biden’s presidency compared to President Donald Trump’s show significant increases in illegal border traffic.

What’s causing the increase in the number of migrants crossing the border?  Men and women have been coming from South America, Central America, and Mexico for decades, and that’s not new at all.  However, the surge of migrants has increased under the inability of many of those nations to adequately provide care and vaccinations for COVID-19.  The recovery from the pandemic also limits economic opportunities in nations already short on jobs.  During the pandemic last year, Central America endured a series of brutal hurricanes which inflicted significant damage.  It’s also likely that many poor migrants saw a Biden administration as far more permissive on its immigration policies than former President Trump.

The Biden administration is currently transferring unaccompanied children who crossed the border from the custody of Customs and Border Protection to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).  This is not an insignificant action, considering Customs and Border Protection are responsible for detention whereas HHS provides care and shelter.  President Biden also increased the number of refugees the United States would take from 15,000 to 62,500 — a salve upon the wound, at best.  

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) also has a role to play in this situation, as they have been tasked with reuniting families who had previously been separated in crossing the border or during processing by Border Patrol agents. 

President Biden has personally made an appeal via the media for migrants to not come to the United States and to definitely not sent their children.  However, to stop the humanitarian crisis at the border, broader policy changes need to happen on immigration.  Any president’s authority to take unilateral action has limits.  Congress must establish legislation for any long lasting change to occur, and that might be a problem … 

The body blow 

About that need for legislation?  It shouldn’t be this much of an issue for President Biden to guide legislation through Congress during this early portion of his term.  Not only does the president enjoy a 54% approval rating, but Democrats currently control the House of Representatives (218-212 with five vacancies) and the Senate (50-50 with the Vice President casting tie votes).

Unfortunately, the nature of the Senate’s rules on debate make it possible for the minority party to stifle any legislation which they might find too objectionable.  Under Senate rules, debate on a bill cannot end unless 60 senators agree.  Since it is rare that either party ever has this many senators, it’s often difficult for legislation to pass even if a party has a majority of senators.  Thus, any senator who wishes to continue ‘debating’ a bill can stall the process under what is known as a filibuster (it comes from the Dutch word for ‘piracy,’ so draw your own conclusions).  

Members of the Senate can vote to change the rules of the body, with only a majority needed to eliminate the filibuster.  Okay, so Democrats can do that, right?  Not exactly.

Senator Joe Manchin, a very moderate Democrat from a very red state (my beloved West Virginia), believes he can somehow restore a sense of bipartisanship to American politics.  As such, he wrote in an op-ed piece for The Washington Post, “There is no circumstance in which I will vote to eliminate or weaken the filibuster.”  

To be fair, Manchin’s argument pertaining to why he won’t vote to end the filibuster has some merit.  He rightfully pointed out that without the minority party’s ability to potentially halt legislation, there could be drastic swings in federal policy.  This is true when we consider the pendulum-like nature of party control in Congress.  Popular or successful policies could be eliminated simply because the majority party disagreed with them.  

Manchin might be correct about swings in policy making at the federal level, but while he stands firm, legislation important to the nation sits idly in committee rooms of the Senate.  Two of these pieces of legislation (already passed by the House), are significant in the future of this nation, and both would genuinely benefit his home state.  Of course, any vote for a Biden initiative appears to many West Virginians as some kind of betrayal (it’s a wonderful, yet strange place to live).

Is it possible that President Biden’s agenda hinges entirely on Joe Manchin?

The For the People Act (also known as HR1) would prevent partisan gerrymandering, mitigate the influence of big money in elections, and require states take significant actions to make voting easier.  Additionally, The American Jobs Plan would make a significant investment into the infrastructure of this nation (long overdue) and provide millions of jobs for Americans (mostly blue-collar jobs according to The White House).

While I think some moderate Republicans are open to negotiations about these pieces of legislation, the current leadership structure of the GOP does not want either of these bills to pass the Senate.  If either of these bills passes, President Biden will have two signature pieces of legislation passed in less than a year.  The implementation of these policies would win elections in 2022 for Democrats and Republicans want to prevent this.  The GOP treats these bills as a zero-sum game, where a victory for Democrats means a defeat for them.  While they cause more gridlock in lawmaking, the American people miss out on opportunities. 

If anyone thinks the GOP cares about bipartisanship, look no further than the recent infighting in House leadership where Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) caved to the right wing of his party in moving to hold a vote to remove Liz Cheney (R-WY) from a leadership position, due to her vote to impeach former President Donald Trump and her refusal to perpetuate the lie that Trump was cheated out of the 2020 Presidential Election.   The GOP seems to be sending a clear message to anyone in the party that stepping out of line will come at a price.

The GOP also didn’t seem to care much about bipartisanship in the Trump administration, when they passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Acts of 2017.  This law passed both the House and the Senate with zero votes from Democrats.  (Note:  The 51-48 margin in the Senate was achieved through the reconciliation process.)

I understand what Joe Manchin is hoping to do for the country, but the Republican Party has not, and will not play by the same rules.  This is why his insistence is such a blow to the Biden administration.  In past years, presidents from either party were given an honest chance to implement their agenda without the opposing party becoming the party of ‘no.’  

This is where the Biden administration seems to find itself at the moment, hit with some serious punches to the mouth.  Yet, the Manchin situation is the most devastating shot.  How does President Biden counter?  What does he do about one rogue senator?

Oh, about that Mike Tyson fight against Evander Holyfield?  Tyson was right, to an extent.  We do see what happens to a plan when someone gets punched in the mouth.  Holyfield, known as one of the great counterpunchers in boxing history, took Tyson’s best shots and stuck with his plan.  He TKO’d Tyson in the 11th round.  Here’s to hoping Biden can channel his inner-Holyfield.