Biden hits road to promote infrastructure law as Covid concerns loom large

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President Joe Biden traveled to Minnesota on Tuesday as his administration seeks to draw public attention to the bipartisan infrastructure legislation amid the emergence of a new and worrying Covid version.

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“Rebuilding America, investing in America — that’s what it’s about. And we’re doing it because we’re battling a pandemic,” Biden said during an event at Dakota County Technical College in Rosemount.

As the Omicron version sparks new fear, Biden reiterated that the version was “a cause for concern, but not a cause for panic.” The president said on Thursday he would outline a “detailed strategy” about how his administration plans to combat Covid this winter, adding that the strategy is not on lockdown but more widespread vaccination and testing. will depend on

Biden argued that enacting a $1.2 trillion infrastructure law, which was approved by Congress with bipartisan support earlier this month, would help the economy grow. The White House is still working to get the second part of Biden’s economic agenda, the Build Back Better Plan, into law.

The House voted to pass the $1.7 trillion Build Back Better bill on November 19, but it still needs approval in the Senate.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D.N.Y., has said he expects to vote on the legislation before Christmas, but Congress also faces a loaded agenda that could jeopardize that timeline.

Biden on Tuesday characterized his Build Back Better bill as a bill that would reduce the cost of child care, elderly care, housing, prescription drugs to Americans while combating climate change and tackling inflation. Will make a “huge difference” in one’s life.

“To be honest, I’m surprised that not a single Republican in Congress has joined us in support of this,” Biden said.

President Joe Biden speaks at Dakota County Technical College on November 30, 2021 in Rosemount, Minn.Carolyn Custer / AP

According to the White House, the infrastructure law would provide Minnesota with $4.5 billion for highways and $302 million for bridges. The state will receive $818 million to improve public transportation, $68 million to build an electric vehicle charging network, $100 million for high-speed Internet, and $680 million to improve water infrastructure.

Democrats are counting on the infrastructure law to energize the party as they anticipate a tough midterm election year.

Ahead of Thanksgiving, the president visited a bridge in New Hampshire and a General Motors plant in Michigan to bolster the legislation. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday’s visit to Minnesota was “part of our ongoing effort to get there and tell the American people that this bill — I should say, this law will benefit them.”

Biden said he and Vice President Kamala Harris, along with cabinet members, will travel across the country in the coming weeks, “to show how these investments are going to change your life.”

During Tuesday’s remarks, Biden said he was informed about the school shooting in Oxford, Michigan, ahead of his speech at Dakota County Technical College.

“My heart goes out to the families who have endured the unimaginable grief of losing a loved one,” Biden said. “That whole community must be in a state of shock right now.”

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