The Magic President

President Joe Biden speaks as he meets rescue teams and first responders in Surfside in Miami, Fla., July 1, 2021. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
Biden's visit to the Surfside, Fla., disaster site illustrates the unwelcome evolution of the highest office in the land.

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE J oe Biden is in Surfside, Fla. But why?

The fact that this question will be received in most quarters as facetious if not outrageous is one more little data point illustrating the metamorphosis of the American president from chief magistrate to chief priest.

There was a time — and it wasn’t even all that long ago — when presidents weren’t expected to make ritual pilgrimages to scenes of suffering.

As John Dickerson recounts in his very readable The Hardest Job in the World, a series of tropical storms pounded the United States in 1955, doing more damage than had been inflicted during any

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