Macron’s visit with Biden was a lovefest. But bigger frictions remain.


Published December 3, 2022

The Washington Post

President Biden’s state dinner on Thursday with French President Emmanuel Macron was a mutual lovefest. But no amount of bonhomie can mask the inevitable incompatibility between the two men’s visions for Europe’s future.

Biden is an Atlanticist at heart. He is fully committed to the U.S.-European relationship, supports NATO wholeheartedly and has courted European leaders since his inauguration. His international and cosmopolitan liberalism also aligns him closely with the values of most Western European leaders, especially on matters such as combating climate change. He is as friendly an American president as European elites could hope for.

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Henry Olsen, a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, studies and provides commentary on American politics. His work focuses on how America’s political order is being upended by populist challenges, from the left and the right. He also studies populism’s impact in other democracies in the developed world.


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