President Biden’s strained relationship with the progressive left is set to take center stage at the APEC summit in San Francisco. As world leaders gather, progressive groups are using the opportunity to highlight their disagreements with Biden’s trade agenda and his handling of the Israel-Hamas conflict.
Pro-Palestinian organizations and anti-capitalist demonstrators have vowed to shut down the conference and block access to the summit. Thousands of protesters took part in a rally and march in downtown San Francisco, calling out political leaders for prioritizing profit over people’s rights.
Organizers and participants expressed their disappointment with Biden’s response to the violence in Gaza and urged elected officials to listen to their base. There is concern that these issues may impact Biden and his party in the upcoming elections.
The planned demonstrations reflect the long-standing tradition of protest in the liberal city. However, recent surveys have shown growing discontent with Biden’s performance, including his handling of China and the Israel-Hamas conflict, even among Democratic voters in California.
The organized protests are centered around opposition to neoliberal capitalism, colonialism, and military imperialism. Protesters argue that APEC represents the interests of big business and fails to prioritize the rights of nations and people.
While the dissent is notable, political scientists believe it is not strong enough to prevent Democrats from voting for Biden in the next election. However, it highlights the growing divisions within the party and the need for Biden to address the concerns of the progressive left to maintain unified support.
In the midst of these demonstrations, Biden will meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping, which is expected to draw the largest protest. The summit will continue to be closely monitored by progressive groups, who believe that not enough has changed for working Americans under the current administration.
The rift between Biden and the progressive left extends beyond American politics. Protesters are using this global forum to bring attention to issues that resonate with people across the world, such as workers’ rights, climate change, and Palestinian rights.
While the protests may not directly impact the outcome of the upcoming elections, they serve as a reminder that Biden’s support among the progressive left is not guaranteed. Addressing the concerns of these groups will be crucial for Biden and his party moving forward.