President Biden on Friday made the case for U.S. manufacturing as a way to rebuild the economy while on a visit to Pittsburgh, Pa.
“From day one, every action I’ve taken to rebuild the economy has been guided by one principal: make it in America. Like we used to. No one knows that better than all the folks here in Pittsburgh,” he said at Carnegie Mellon University.
Biden went to Pittsburgh to deliver remarks about the administration’s focus on strengthening supply chains, revitalizing American manufacturing and creating good-paying union jobs, including through the bipartisan infrastructure law. Hours before he left the White House for the Keystone State, a bridge collapsed in Pittsburgh, and he added a stop to visit the site.
“You know that to build a truly strong economy, we need a future that’s made it America. That means using products, parts, materials, built right here in the United States of America. It means bringing manufacturing back, jobs back, building supply chains here at home, not outsourcing abroad, so we have better jobs and lower prices here,” he said in his remarks.
“It means betting on America’s workers,” the president said.
He touted the infrastructure law, which he signed in November, and the federal investments it will make to repair roads and bridges and in other areas, such as climate initiatives.
“Now, just 74 days after signing that law, we’re already making tangible differences for highways, ports, airports, rail, high-speed internet, clean air, clean water,” he said.
During his visit to the site of the Fern Hollow Bridge that collapsed hours earlier, he met with local officials and emergency responders, saying that the infrastructure bill is going to fix all of Pittsburgh’s vast number of bridges.
“We’ve got to move. The next time, we don’t need headlines saying that someone was killed when the next bridge collapses,” Biden said. No deaths have been reported from the bridge collapse as of Friday afternoon.
The infrastructure bill will invest at least $1.6 billion in Pennsylvania’s bridges, including $327 million in fiscal year 2022 for bridge repairs in the state, the president said.
“I never knew Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, had more bridges than any other city in the world,” Biden said, noting that he is a Pennsylvania native.
He called it “unacceptable” that there are 43,000 bridges nationwide in poor condition.
He also touted the economic growth in his first year in office, noting 6.4 million jobs were created in one year.
And he mentioned Intel’s $20 billion investment to build chip factories, which was announced last week, and General Motor’s announcement on Tuesday that the auto giant will invest nearly $7 billion in electric vehicle manufacturing sites in Michigan.
“It takes all of us working together, all of us working together, to get this done and that’s finally beginning to happen. When the federal government invests in innovation, it powers up the private sector to do what it does best, creating incredible new technologies, new industries, and most importantly new jobs,” he said.
“These are the kinds of investments and partnerships that help us build a made in America future. We can’t slow down now, we can’t slow down now,” he added.