WASHINGTON – The descendants of the men and women who designed and implemented President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal gather regularly on Zoom to strategize how to keep the pressure on President Joe Biden to likewise go big and bold.
“We would love to think that we have captured his attention and stirred the pot with some FDR seasoning,” said Scott Wallace, the grandson of one of Roosevelt’s vice presidents and one of five descendants who has been urging Biden for the past year to pass a “21st Century New Deal.”
Biden hasn’t seemed to need the encouragement.
“There’s a new bargain,” Biden said during a May trip to Cleveland to push for the trillions of dollars he wants to spend on infrastructure, education, health care, child care and more. “Everyone is going to be in on the deal this time.”
Many comparisons – not all of them favorable – have been made between the size and scope of Biden’s ambitions and Roosevelt’s programs and the World War II spending that lifted the nation out of the Great Depression.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, who has been at the forefront of selling the infrastructure component of Biden’s plan, calls it the “largest jobs package since World War II.”
“Today’s effort might be described as ‘the big deal,’” Buttigieg said in a May speech to graduates of the Harvard Kennedy School. “The big deal is based on a big ambition to demonstrate how good government can indeed do big and good things and…