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BECK: Reagan’s famed question answered again with ‘no’
President Jimmy Carter and his Republican challenger, Ronald Reagan, shake hands before their Oct. 28, 1980 debate. - photo by File Photo

"Are you better off today than you were four years ago?”

That was the question that Ronald Reagan posed in 1980 to then-Democratic President Jimmy Carter during a debate held the final week of the presidential campaign.

It was answered with a resounding “no.”

Reagan, the Republican nominee, won the presidency in a landslide. He went on to serve two terms and is often referred to as one of the greatest presidents in U.S. history. Carter, a Georgia native, is often labeled the worst president of our time, but it seems someone could be coming for his position.

As midterm elections are around the corner, I look ahead to 2024 and envision history potentially repeating itself, as it so often does.

I ask myself Reagan’s question today.

“Am I better off today than I was four years ago?”

Better yet, “Am I better off today than I was just one year ago?”

Under the reign of President Joe Biden (who currently has an approval rating of only 43%, per Reuters), the plan has been to “Build Back Better,” but all I see is a nation taking steps backward — back to 2008, the middle of what history books call the Great Recession, when the housing market took a nose dive and the economy was in crisis. Will history books tell us 2021-2022 was the Great Regression?

The truth is, Biden entered a position that didn’t need him to rebuild anything. Fuel prices were low, the economy was rebounding from a global pandemic and there was peace among other global powers. 

But because of a visible hatred for former President Donald Trump (remember that time Biden said he wished they were in high school so he could “beat the hell” out of Trump?) and everything he stands for, the Biden Administration tore everything down and ended nearly all of Trump’s policies. 

Now, look where we are. Are we better off?

My answer is a resounding and emphatic, “no.”

Unless Biden turns things around, reelection for the nearly 80-year-old is seemingly a pipe dream. I expect any Republican challenger — whether it be Trump or another Republican candidate (looking at you, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis) — to use Reagan’s famed question as a key part of their campaign to take back the White House.

Taylor Beck is editor and publisher of The News. Reach him at