As you know by now, Joe Biden was in Virginia Beach, Va., yesterday to yell at the clouds, bash Republicans over health care, and talk about either a distant memory or bizarre fantasy about a nurse named Pearl. It may be a combination of both. After all, how long has it been since someone named their daughter Pearl? That creepy episode aside, chances are good that after his appearance, Biden got some ice cream for a treat and maybe a stop at the beach to look for shells and build a sandcastle.

My family back in Ohio always hated it when presidents came to town. Since Ohio has traditionally been a key state in presidential elections, during some campaigns, presidents seemed to be coming back to town every other week. Well, probably not that often, but it felt that way. At one point, presidential junkets to the Buckeye State became more of a pain in the backside than anything else, particularly when it came to traffic snarls.

A number of people in Virginia Beach seemed to feel the same way.

Just The News noted that some people took issue with the fact that Biden has visited Ukraine and now Virginia Beach, while pointedly ignoring the crisis in East Palestine, Ohio. One person commented, “So Biden can go to Virginia Beach but not East Palestine?” Another said, “Joe Biden should have been in East Palestine in the aftermath of the train derailment instead of shutting down Virginia Beach. Also, I hope today’s disaster was a lesson to our city leaders who insist on making us into a big city when we’re really just a small military town.”

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Even Republican Gov. Glen Youngkin weighed in, telling Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo:

Well, Joe Biden’s been to Ukraine, now he’s coming to Virginia. He has yet to go to Ohio. And he wants to talk about healthcare. Why doesn’t he go someplace where people actually have real health concerns that are driving them to worry about not just the day-to-day impacts of this horrific train crash, but the long-term impacts with cancer threats, etc.

It isn’t just that the Biden administration is ignoring East Palestine because it is MAGA country. The administration is ignoring East Palestine for the same reason that it is ignoring very real problems in the rest of the country. The message from the administration is that everything is fine. Or will be once we get rid of the Meddling-Mega-Mechano-Menacing MAGA Republicans. The administration knows everything is not fine. In fact, most things are awful. Biden was in Virginia Beach because that was the safest, most innocuous place for him to be. The administration just needs to hold its ground until the 2024 election, even as that ground turns into quicksand. Of course, the thing about quicksand is that if there are enough people under you in the pile, you still have time to save yourself. And the administration knows that, too.

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