President Biden’s Unique —  And Crucial — Duty: To Tell The Truth

President Biden’s Unique — And Crucial — Duty: To Tell The Truth


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Janet Ybarra
Former Washington Journalist
Contributor on The Bipartisan Press

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And each of us has a duty and responsibility, as citizens, as Americans, and especially as leaders – leaders who have pledged to honor our Constitution and protect our nation — to defend the truth and to defeat the lies.

— President Biden’s Inaugural Address, January 20, 2021

In his Inauguration, President Biden gave voice as much to fighting for the truth as he did in his Oath to defending the Constitution itself.

It will be a tall order and a tough job.

Certainly, Biden was referring to the kinds of “big lies” that brought about the insurrection and terrorist attack against the US Capitol on January 6.

And, to be sure, that will be needed and appropriate.

But, to be just as sure, that puts a unique and special responsibility on Biden’s shoulders these next four years.

His predecessor, by the end, tallied an a breathtaking more than 30,000 false and misleading claims — or in common parlance, “lies.”

Now, this astronomical figure of falsehoods is — far and away — higher than the average political fibbing.

But, even still, in a post-Trump world, Biden has an even greater duty to reestablish guardrails in our democracy which Trump trampled — especially this one which the new president claimed so explicitly upon taking office.

The currency of democracy is facts. Without facts — shared objective reality — there can be no civil, rational compare-and-contrast of this policy to that.

When President Biden says he “will always level with you,” he really must mean it.

And he has to mean it with zero wiggle room which would undermine his credibility to the truth.

This means, frankly, that this president can’t prevaricate, fib, or even exaggerate almost at all.

Any time he would do so, would just undercut the very important first message he delivered to an eager — but nervous — nation.

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