by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
President Joe Biden is faced with his share of conundrums and crises — more, perhaps, than many of his modern predecessors. From a shooting war in Europe to the renewed threat of terrorism in Central Asia to persistent inflation and an unprecedented surge of undocumented migrants at home, the Biden administration has its hands full. But managing these crises isn’t very fun. You know what is fun? Live music. So, that’s the direction in which the White House is pivoting.
In fact, the president has been pivoting in this direction for quite some time as part of the Democratic Party’s rapid evolution into a high-end luxury lifestyle brand. As far back as February, the president convened a meeting of the deceptively named “Competition Council,” whose job was to apply the patina of legitimacy to the White House’s claim that inflation was wholly a byproduct of corporate avarice. The president tasked his council with cracking down on “junk fees” associated with online ticketing for events such as concerts and sports.
Earnest Democrats have convinced themselves that the White House’s desire to reduce the cost of amusements is sincere, though it’s hard to avoid the impression that their short-term goal is the pursuit of a bejeweled cudgel with which to bludgeon congressional Republicans.
The second the GOP regained control of the House, the White House tasked Republicans with crafting legislation that would regulate ticketing as a direct response to what the New York Times noted was “the botched sale of tickets to Taylor Swift’s latest tour.” “With every ticketing debacle, from Beyoncé to Taylor Swift, and so many more, their frustration grows,” said prominent Democratic congresswoman Jan Shakowsky of America’s “incredibly frustrated” fans.