Biden touts economy, pushes infrastructure bill
President Biden on Monday touted the economy and argued a bipartisan infrastructure deal will provide further help to workers and consumers.
“Our economy’s come a long way over the last six months. We can’t slow down now,” Biden said in remarks from the White House.
“We can make this boom we’re experiencing today one that will ensure that all Americans have the opportunity to share in it for years to come and we can show the world that American democracy can deliver for the people,” he added.
Biden spoke amid a selloff on Wall Street, where stocks were falling over concerns about the rising number of coronavirus cases around the country.
The bipartisan infrastructure deal is also in some peril, with Republicans and Democrats fighting over how to pay for a portion of the bill, which is expected to cost $1.2 trillion over eight years.
The economy has been a strong point for Biden despite concerns over inflation and the stock selloff, as markets were recently at record highs and the economy has continued to create jobs.
Biden on Monday sought to ease concerns over inflation.
“My administration understands that if we were to ever experience unchecked inflation over the long-term, that would pose a real challenge to our economy. So while we’re confident, that isn’t what we’re seeing today. We’re going to remain vigilant about any response that is needed,” he said.
Biden added that the Federal Reserve “is independent” and “should take whatever steps it deems necessary” to prevent inflation.
The president tied his remarks on the economy to a call for every American to be vaccinated.
“We can’t let up, especially since, and because of, the delta variant, which is more transmissible and more dangerous,” he said, adding that four states made up 40 percent of all COVID-19 cases last week.
“If you’re unvaccinated, you are not protected. So please, please get vaccinated. Get vaccinated now. It works, it’s safe, it’s free, it’s convenient,” he said.
Last week, Surgeon General Vivek Murthy issued an advisory calling health misinformation an “urgent threat” amid the push to get more Americans vaccinated against COVID-19.
Biden commented on criticism during the campaign that if he was elected, it would be the end of capitalism.
“I never understood that one, but we’ve heard an awful lot,” he said.
“Folks, it turns out capitalism is alive and very well. We’re making serious progress to ensure that it works the way it’s supposed to work, for the good of the American people. For all those predictions of gloom and doom six months in, here’s where we stand. Record growth, record job creation, workers getting hard-earned breaks,” he said.