Panel discussion reviews first year of Biden’s presidency

Ben Miller
Layout Editor

Three Franciscan University of Steubenville faculty members held a panel discussion about the first year of Joe Biden’s presidency for students in the Gentile Gallery Monday.

The panel featured Daniel Kempton, who holds a doctorate in political science; Stephen Krason, who holds a doctorate of jurisprudence; and Charles Nemeth, who holds a doctorate of law from the University of Baltimore Law.

Freshman Gia Smith, president of the Political Science Association at Franciscan, opened the event in prayer and introduced the speakers.

The event was largely critical of Biden’s administration.

Nemeth said the president has a lack of regard for the rule of law. He cited Biden’s rebuke from circuit courts of appeal and from the Supreme Court.

Nemeth also cited Biden’s overturning of many policies of former president Donald Trump.

“It’s his general policy of antagonism toward the previous administration,” Nemeth said. “As Aquinas tells us over and over, change should not always happen in law; change should be slower in law than in other institutional aspects of any systems.”

Kempton compared Biden to Theodore Roosevelt.

“Theodore Roosevelt … said he would commit to ‘speaking softly and carrying a big stick,’” Kempton said. “I believe President Biden has his own version of this axiom, which is something like ‘speak loudly and carry a Nerf gun.’”

Kempton said that regardless of thoughts on whether America should have been in Afghanistan in the first place or not, it must be examined through the lens of the Catholic teaching of just war.

Krason said the president is pushing false claims of discrimination in voting rights that compromise the traditional power of the state to run elections. Krason also said Biden’s administration is trying to force Catholic doctors and hospitals to compromise their morals.

Smith opened the floor to questions from the audience, beginning with a question from the Political Science Association about Biden’s campaign promise of uniting political parties.

Krason responded and said the Democrats’ worldview is in opposition to sound culture and ethics.

“Of course, that’s going to create division,” Krason said. “This administration reflects that worldview.”

Students asked a variety of questions about the ramifications of Build Back Better, China, Russia and COVID-19.

In response to a question as to whether the president could be impeached on account of his cognitive abilities, Nemeth said that a president cannot be impeached on that count, but the president could be removed from office using the 25th Amendment. Nemeth said there are several other grounds he thinks the president could be impeached upon.

Freshman Luke Roesener said he agreed that the Biden administration is not moral.

“We need to focus on the fact of morality,” Roesener said. “We have to do what we can to show our stand and say, ‘this is unacceptable.’”

The talk was hosted by the Political Science Association.