President Joe Biden is set to come to Greensboro this week and will give a speech at North Carolina A&T.  The administration promises that he will explain how he’s going to “bring down costs for the American people as part of Building a Better America.” I can’t wait to hear the explanation.

Graduates from NC A&T – a standout HBCU that I proudly represented in Congress – will soon join students from the rest of North Carolina’s premiere colleges and universities and others from around the country to enter the working world. Having a daughter in high school and one in college, I am concerned that this generation is going to be hobbled out of the gate by President Biden’s failed policies that are only making life harder for North Carolina families. He owes them, and all of us, an explanation – but if his administration’s record is any indication, it will be too little too late.

The only way to get our state and our country back on track is to bring back the winning America First agenda. And America First means putting American families first.

The Biden administration itself admitted how bad things were earlier this week, when the Labor Department announced that inflation has hit a 40-year high – blasting up to 8.5% in March. The jump between February and March was the worst single-month rise since 2005, well before the last recession.

Working families in North Carolina don’t need Washington economists to tell them things are getting more expensive. We see it every time we go to the grocery store.  Food prices have jumped nearly 9% nationwide.  It’s not just consumers who feel the brunt of this. We’re one of the top pork-producing states in the nation, and the rising cost of meat – which saw an increase of nearly 14% – means more mounting pressure on our farmers.

We see it at the gas pump too. I’m reminded of the real impacts of Biden’s inflation every time I stop for gas on the way to a different campaign stop. Americans are paying nearly 50% more on average for a tank of gas than they were a year ago. The president tries to blame this entirely on sanctions against Russian oil. Of course Vladimir Putin should be punished for the horrific, unjustified war he has unleashed upon the Ukrainian people, but the reality is that Russia only accounts for about 8% of American oil imports. The best way to keep gas prices low is not to tie them to Russia or the Middle East or anywhere else, but to unleash the great energy resources in our own country and finally achieve American energy independence. Instead, the Biden administration has committed itself to the far-left Green New Deal agenda, rejecting an energy independent America. We’re all paying the price.

As I travel the state listening to North Carolina families, the top issue I’m hearing about is bringing down the high cost of living. It’s not the only way that the Democrats are mismanaging how we live our lives. Parents may have to pay more at the gas pump to get their kids to school, but they also have to worry about what happens after they drop them off.

Democrats – even the so-called “moderates” – have continuously signaled their support for  a radical education agenda pushed by fringe “theorists” and teacher’s union activists. When parents try to speak out against this, the Biden administration brands their efforts as hateful or even tries to designate them as “domestic terrorists.” Since when did parents who want a say in how their children are educated become such a threat to our government?  What kind of agenda must they be pushing that they need to squash parental rights to protect it?

This is the Democrats’ America in 2022: the far left has taken the reins, and everything is out of control. The first step to fixing this is to elect America First candidates this November to help Republicans retake control of Congress. North Carolinians will play an important role in determining control of the Senate. They need a candidate who shows up to talk about the issues and ask the tough questions. Only then can a Republican Congress work with a Republican president elected in 2024 to finally clean up some of the mess that’s built up in recent years.

Last December, Biden insisted that inflation was at “the peak of the crisis.” That wasn’t true.  His inflation crisis has no signs of slowing down, and he’s coming here to try to downplay it. His approval rating in our state is a dismal 35%. We’re tired of his out-of-control, failed government, and we’re ready to put American families – and America – first. Students at A&T, the people of Greensboro and all North Carolinians deserve better than Biden’s excuses. They deserve leaders who will put them first and open doors of opportunity so that they can pursue the American dream.

After representing NC’s 6th Congressional District in Congress for six years, Mark Walker is now running for Senate to represent all North Carolinians as a conservative champion and bridge builder.