Remarks by President Biden on the American Rescue Plan’s Particular Monetary Help Program

3:19 P.M. EDT THE PRESIDENT:  Whats up, Cleveland!  (Applause.)  Thanks.  Thanks.  (The orchestra concludes taking

3:19 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Whats up, Cleveland!  (Applause.)  Thanks.  Thanks. 

(The orchestra concludes taking part in “Hail to the Chief.”)

Thanks to the orchestra.  Thanks very a lot.  (Applause.)

Properly, let me begin off by saying — I’d get in bother with my mom, had been she right here, if I didn’t say, “Excuse my again after I’m talking.”  I apologize.  Primary.

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  (Inaudible.)

THE PRESIDENT:  You’ve got my — (laughs) —

Whats up, Cleveland!  Earlier than I start, although, I need to make one critical remark concerning the taking pictures and the demise of Jayland Walker.  The Justice Division’s Civil Rights Division; the FBI Discipline Workplace in Akron, Ohio; and the native U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace are intently monitoring and reviewing what occurred.  

The FBI continues to coordinate with state and native companions to supply assets and specialised talent.  If the proof reveals potential violations of federal felony statutes, the Justice Division will take the suitable motion.  And I simply need you to know what’s going to occur.  (Applause.)

And now — now for right this moment’s program.  Thanks, Invoice, for that introduction and for the welcome on behalf of the Ironworkers Native 17 right here in Cleveland. 

Ironworkers had been with me the primary time I ran, as a 29-year-old child, for the Senate.  And also you’re all loopy.  (Laughter.)

I bear in mind you bought a man named Tommy Schranck who was the president of a Native in Delaware.  And he mentioned, “Let’s exit and meet a number of the guys and ladies.” 

We went out to a buil- — a development web site.  We went up a makeshift elevator.  We went up 13 flooring.  They’re sitting on 18-inch beams, consuming their lunch.  I’m pondering to myself, “My God, these guys are supporting me.”  However they’re the blokes I grew up with.

You already know, the individuals you heard converse earlier right this moment — and I apologize, I’m going to repeat a few of what they mentioned.  However, you understand, all of us come from the neighborhood.  All of us come from — no, I imply it.  I — I used to be born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, which was a union city, principally coalmine union city — much more. 

My great-grandfather was a — labored within the mines, was a mining engineer.  And everyone — everyone there — there was just one phrase you heard most frequently in my household.  Not a joke.  Most essential phrase wasn’t “unions,” it was “dignity.”  “Dignity.”  Everyone seems to be entitled to be handled with dignity.

My dad — (applause) — then we moved to somewhat city — when coal died, we moved to a city referred to as Claymont, Delaware, simply throughout the road in — from Pennsylvania, the place the Delaware River bends.

And, you understand, you used to have over 6,000 — 6,000 steelworkers — had been metal.  It’s all gone now.  All of it, gone.  Was once an organization city, actually.  The hills had been all firm shops, firm — firm buildings.  Nevertheless it’s gone.  And the union motion started to only crumble in Delaware and in Claymont. 

And my dad by no means belonged to a union, however I say this on the entrance finish: My dad was a salesman.  And he got here down from Scranton when coal died.  He wasn’t a coalminer, however he labored in gross sales up there.

And I’ll always remember: We lived in a — we lived in a three-bedroom, split-level residence, like loads of suburban areas growing within the early ‘50s and mid-‘50s.  And there have been, I feel, 38, 40 properties.  And so they had been — and we had 4 children within the household and a grandpop dwelling with us and mother and pop.

And the partitions had been skinny.  And my dad — one evening, I may inform he was actually stressed.  I may hear him and form of a — not banging, however leaning up towards the wall within the room — my room.

Subsequent morning, I requested my — my dad had an expression.  He mentioned, “Joey, you by no means complain and by no means clarify.  Simply rise up.  Simply rise up.”

And I used to be questioning what was unsuitable.  And I requested my mother.  She mentioned, “The corporate says no pensions.  No pensions.”

And so, you understand, loads of you come from households like mine — loads of the individuals who stood behind me.  Richie Neal from the state of Massachusetts — (applause) — he’s, as my uncle would say — Richie is — he’s union from belt buckle to shoe sole, man.  (Laughter.)

And — however all the parents you heard converse right this moment care about it, as a result of we all know what it’s wish to be disadvantaged of your dignity.  We all know what it’s wish to have a father or a mom should put their head down after they know they will’t afford a factor for his or her child that they want, whether or not it’s a prescription or whether or not it’s simply plain having the ability to go off to high school.

And the purpose I need to make is that this: All of us perceive this.  And after I ran for workplace this time — and I’ve been a union supporter for my complete profession.  However I made a promise.  I imply it sincerely, and Marty is aware of this.  I assured, when the — you understand, when the Truthful Labor Requirements Act was handed and — again within the ‘30s — and Roosevelt got here alongside, it didn’t say unions had been okay.  It says we should always “encourage” unions.  Encourage unions.  (Applause.)

As a result of when unions do properly, everyone does properly.  Everyone does properly.  (Applause.)  Not a joke.  Not a joke.

So right here’s the deal.  The deal is kind of easy.  Once I ran, I used to be criticized for the idea upon which I ran.  I mentioned I’m operating for 3 causes. One, to revive the soul of America — the decency and honor of this nation.  (Applause.)  And, two, to rebuild the spine of the nation.  The spine of the nation are the working ladies and men, the center class.  And, you understand, there’s a center class for one motive: American unions.  (Applause.)  That’s the one motive there’s a center class.  Not a joke.  That’s a truth.  Not a joke.

And when the center class does properly, everyone does properly — individuals have a approach up, and the rich nonetheless do very properly. 

And so, people, the third motive I ran was to unify the nation — to unify it.  That’s been the tougher a part of it proper now.  No, I’m critical.  As a result of we’ve change into so divided — so divided on this.  However one factor we had been divided on after we ran — and, you understand, I need to thank Mayor Bibb for the passport into town.  (Applause.)

However we — we had been divided on the query we’re celebrating right this moment. 

And, people, how about really having a union man as Secretary of Labor?  Isn’t that one thing?  (Applause.)  Thanks, Marty.

And I do know we’ve a unbelievable Secretary of Housing and City Growth: Cleveland’s personal Marcia Fudge.  (Applause.)  She’s — she wished she was going to be right here.

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I’m additionally honored to be right here with Senator Sherrod Brown, a terrific champion of working people.  (Applause.)  He actually is.  He actually is.

And thanks additionally for the unbelievable Democratic members of Congress right here.  Marcy Kaptur — God love you, Marcy.  (Applause.)  You’re the finest.  She does all of it — unions and international coverage.  And for- — and also you assume I’m joking.  I’m not joking.  She actually is aware of extra about international coverage.  She’s forgotten greater than most members of Congress know.  (Laughter.)

And, Shontel Brown, simply bear in mind me if you’re president, okay?  (Applause.)  All proper?  Congratulations.

Look, and Richie Neal isn’t solely a robust, robust union supporter and been a terrific supporter of this laws, however he’s chairman of probably the most highly effective committee in the USA Congress, the Home Methods and Means Committee — the blokes with the cash.  The blokes with cash.  And he’s led on labored difficulty — labor points for many years.

You already know, whereas they couldn’t be right here, I additionally need to thank Senator Tim Ryan — future Senator Tim Ryan — (applause) — and Senator Patty Murray of the state of Washington for his or her unbelievable work on this laws.

With everybody’s management and with their votes and, most of all, with the unrelenting dedication of labor and all of you, this historic day is made doable.  And it truly is historic.

This was $90 billion, okay?  (Applause.)  Nevertheless it’s small compared to the bailouts of companies and main companies and banks. 

And, people, I’m right here right this moment to speak concerning the difficulty that impacts each single American and their retirement.  Folks across the nation get up day-after-day questioning whether or not they’ve saved sufficient to supply for themselves and their households earlier than they cease working — work at a job that gives primary dignity, an excellent middle-class job you may elevate a household on, a job that gives a dignified retirement and provides you with peace of thoughts.

Consider all of the individuals — and lots of of you went to mattress at evening placing your head on the pillow and saying, “Am I going to be all proper?  Is my household going to be all proper?  Is my spouse or my husband or my little one, are they going to be okay?”

It’s a dignified retirement along with your partner within the residence in your group you labored and lived on your complete life.  However the actuality is for therefore many individuals: The goalposts preserve transferring.  Unfor- — that’s in all probability Trump calling me.  (Laughter.)  I hear — I hear that sound there.

Sadly, this occurs to individuals who want it most: working individuals on this nation.  Plenty of politicians like to speak about how they’re going to do one thing about it.  Properly, I’m right here right this moment to say we’ve carried out one thing about it.  (Applause.)  And I’ve saved their promise. 

I campaigned to revive the spine of this nation — the center class and unions — as a result of I do know this: The center class constructed American unions, constructed the center class right this moment.  I’m retaining the promise — probably the most important achievement union employees and retirees have obtained in over 50 years.  And that’s not hyperbole.  (Applause.)

For years and years, union employees have been driving vans from factories to shops, bagging your groceries, setting up the buildings, bridges, roads we want, and a lot extra.  The ironworkers, bricklayers, carpenters, laborers, plumbers, truck drivers, musicians, I would add.  (Applause.)  Meals employees and a lot extra.

And with every paycheck you earn, their employers put cash into their pension plans.  These employees work laborious right this moment to safe a retirement tomorrow.  That’s what it’s all about.

Now, loads of companies aren’t ready or keen to run their very own pension plans.  And in some industries, employees are employed by a number of totally different employers over the course of a yr or longer. 

For instance, we see that in transportation, development, and leisure.  So working with the union that represents their staff, companies in the identical trade typically come collectively to kind what’s referred to as multi-employer union — and I do know you understand this, however individuals listening to this on tv might not know this — pension plans that serve 11 million People throughout the nation. 

And to ensure these pensions are managed responsibly and to guard the taking part employees and retirees, the federal authorities oversees and insures the plans. 

However we’ve seen the chance of hundreds of thousands of employees face as they watch their hard-earned pensions flip into damaged guarantees.    We noticed it earlier than the pandemic and the financial disaster that adopted.  Tens of millions of retirees had been vulnerable to shedding their retirement safety, by way of no fault of their very own, based mostly on circumstances and unrelenting assaults on unions that had been going down.

200 multiemployer pension plans for two to three million employees and retirees had been going bancrupt.  What meaning is to these 2 or 3 million employees — they confronted painful cuts to the advantages they counted on and for the dignified safety of retirement.

You simply heard from Invoice what it’s wish to work 30, 40, 50 years — working laborious day-after-day, doing every thing to supply for your loved ones; monitor each greenback of that paycheck for groceries, the mortgage, and, hopefully, for a household trip perhaps at some point; understanding when it’s time to retire, your pension you earned might be there; understanding that collectively along with your Social Safety advantages, that pension will proceed an excellent middle-class life for you in retirement.  For some, simply — my dad used to say, “Just a bit peace of thoughts.”  

However for people at residence, think about shedding 50 or 60 p.c of that pension by way of completely no fault of your individual.  Think about what it does financially and emotionally, what it does to your dignity. 

Additionally right here is Davey Grubbs, a retired Teamsters truck driver from North Carolina who confronted almost 70 p.c reduce in his pension. 

And now additionally becoming a member of me right this moment is Rita Lewis.  The place are you, Rita?  Rita is right here someplace, I’m advised.  She stepped out.  I don’t blame her.  (Laughter.)  You already know, she’s Butch’s widow.  And their anniversary is developing in a few days.  Childhood sweethearts. 

Butch was a ballplayer drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates out of highschool, however he enlisted in the USA Military as an alternative.  Particular Forces Military Ranger.  Served in Vietnam.  Earned, like my son, the Bronze Star.  My son didn’t earn the Purple Coronary heart, however — and the Purple Coronary heart. 

Got here again residence to Rita, settled in Cincinnati.  Turned a trucker represented by the Teamsters, after which president of his native.  Referred to as an honorable, trustworthy, and respectable labor chief. 

Butch confronted extreme cuts in his pension, and he grew to become a fierce advocate for safeguarding the pensions of his fellow employees. 

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Butch died greater than 16 years — 6 years in the past.  And Rita has carried on his legacy ever since. 

And with the — with — and with the Democrats in Congress, I would add, and Marty Walsh’s management, we introduced the Butch — he — we fought for the Butch Lewis Act to guard pensions for hundreds of thousands of employees and retirees. 

As a candidate for President, I argued for its passage and promised, when it handed, I might signal it.  And that’s the promise I’ve saved after I — I included the Butch Lewis Act within the American Rescue Plan. (Applause.)  

Now, multi-employer plans will stay solvent for many years to return at the very least till — assured till 2051.  These retirees — these retirees who misplaced their advantages could have them restored retroactively.  (Applause.)  We turned a promised damaged right into a promised saved.  

It issues to employees.  It issues to their households.  It issues to the nation. 

You all bear in mind what the economic system was like after I was elected: a rustic in a pandemic with no actual plans find out how to get out of it — hundreds of thousands of individuals out of their jobs, households in vehicles — bear in mind? — backed up for actually miles, ready for a field of meals to be put of their trunk.  Only a — a field of meals to be put of their trunk as a result of they didn’t have sufficient to eat. 

The earlier administration misplaced extra jobs on its watch than any administration since Herbert Hoover — that’s a truth — all based mostly on failed trickle-down economics that benefitted the wealthiest People and hit the center class and dealing individuals the toughest.  

However we got here in with a essentially totally different financial imaginative and prescient: an economic system that grows from the underside up and the center out.  It’s good for everybody, as a result of when the center class does properly, the poor have a ladder up and the rich nonetheless do very properly.  (Applause.)

And that’s why we designed the American Rescue Plan based mostly on — based mostly on the idea {that a} restoration ought to assist all People prosper, a perception that working — constructing energy and unions are good for employees and for the economic system, a plan that led to probably the most jobs created within the first interval of a presidency than any time in over — in all American historical past.  (Applause.)

And we’ve seen up to now how financial disaster can go away so many People in robust straits for years, typically for the remainder of their lives.  Economists name it the “scarring impact” — the lasting dangerous results of financial hardship, together with people unemployed for a very long time.

Keep in mind, after we began this, lots of people had been equally as certified, however they’d been unemployed for 8, 10, 12 months; they wouldn’t even be thought-about.  Two individuals put in an utility — the individual could also be extra certified however unemployed — out of — out of labor for longer.  It’s referred to as the “scarring impact” — individuals not capable of get again to work.  Interval.  However we modified that.  And younger individuals who confronted a weak labor market — they’re again.  

Dropping an enormous a part of your revenue late in life, that’s a scar, although, that doesn’t heal.  Properly, not this time.  Lengthy-term unemployment and youth unemployment dropped at a file tempo.  With right this moment’s actions, hundreds of thousands of employees could have the dignified retirement they earned and so they deserve.  (Applause.)

And, people, let’s be trustworthy: I’d like to inform you, everybody, that — right here that this coverage that honors laborious work and ensures dignified retirement was universally supported, no matter political get together.  However this is a crucial level and this actually issues: Sadly, that’s not the case.  

Not one single Republican — not — no, that is — I imply, that is what I’m speaking about.  Not one single solitary Republican voted for the Butch Lewis Act or this laws.


THE PRESIDENT:  And, people — and, people, I can inform you, these of us within the — had been — I used to be within the Congress a very long time, and the persons are nonetheless within the Congress — there’s ones who wished to, however they’re afraid to — afraid to — as a result of the Trumpers would actually take them out.  Not a joke.  That’s how dangerous it’s gotten.  We’ve obtained to vary it.  We’ve obtained to vary it.

Actually, when this invoice was transferring by way of Congress, Republicans referred to as it — referred to as these pensions, quote, “rat holes.”  That was their — no, that was their phrase on the ground — “rat holes.”

Who do they assume they’re?  Who do they assume you might be, for God’s sake?  And my predecessor had the prospect to behave, however he didn’t have the dedication to you or the braveness to face as much as his personal get together to get issues carried out, dismissing and ignoring the forgotten individuals he promised to assist.  Keep in mind how he was going to assist working-class people? 

However tax reduce for the wealthiest People — he had no bother passing that.  They handed a $2 trillion tax reduce, not a penny of which was paid for.  Elevated the debt by $2 trillion.  The overwhelming majority of individuals making the highest 1 p.c of revenue, the largest companies and their — their greatest cheerleaders of that two thou- — $2 trillion tax reduce.  Once more, disproportionately benefitted the wealthiest — the wealthiest People.

Defending a system during which, for instance, the 55 of the most important Fortune 500 firms in America paid zero in taxes.  Zero.

They made — they made $40 billion.  Didn’t pay a single penny.

The get together that select to make life extra comfy for the already comfy disparage and oppose retirement safety for working individuals. 

And now, when Republicans really do provide a plan — and so they lastly — we — you understand, I’m not joking.  Ask your self this query: What’s the Republican platform going into this marketing campaign?

AUDIENCE:  (Inaudible.)

THE PRESIDENT:  No, no.  I’m not — I’m being lethal earnest.  I’m not attempting to be poli- — simply — only a truth.

Properly, they’ve a man who’s the — Rick Scott from Florida, who heads up the Republican Marketing campaign Committee.  He put out the plan.  What does that plan do?  It makes the tax system much less honest by giving — eager to tax everyone making beneath $100,000 considerably extra, on common — much more cash.  It really raises taxes on these working households as a result of he thinks you don’t pay sufficient in taxes already.

No, no.  Not a joke.  I can — I ought to have introduced alongside the precise copy of the plan, however log on and get — no, for actual.  It’s been revealed.  They revealed it.  They assume we’re freeloaders.

However he’s not — however he’s obtained an issue with a tax code that permits billionaires — none in any respect, no drawback — trillion and billionaires in America — there’s 789 or thereabouts.  You already know what their common federal revenue tax they pay?  Eight p.c.

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Each certainly one of you could have a job pays greater than 8 p.c — each single certainly one of you.  When you’re a cop, a instructor, a firefighter, union employee, you in all probability pay two to a few instances that.  Now, after refusing to guard your pension, they’re going after your Social Safety.

Look, I might have thought, had I not seen it on paper and heard them speak about it, that I used to be making this up.  Not a joke.

His large thought is put Social Safety on the chopping block each 5 years.  That’s: Each 5 years, Social Safety, Medicare, and Medicaid should be reauthorized or they exit of existence.

Social Safety you paid in from the day you began working.  It’s your different pension.  You paid into it each single paycheck.  You earned it.  It’s your cash, identical to your pension. 

And he provides in Medicare and Medicaid for the chopping block each 5 years.  Except Congress explicitly votes to increase these applications, they go away. 

You understand how they work the foundations within the Senate.  The flexibility to gradual this up and preserve that from taking place is actual.

You understand how laborious it’s to get something carried out in Congress.  Think about what it might imply if Republicans had their approach.  

Look, the ultra-MAGA Republicans — Congress is deciding each 5 years whether or not the — your promise of your hard-earned Medicare and Social Safety can be continued or discontinued or slashed.  It’s shameful. 

However Rick Scott isn’t alone.  Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina is speaking —


THE PRESIDENT:  No, he has a proposal to chop Social Safety. 

And by the way in which, I would word, parenthetically: As President — the primary yr I used to be President, I reduce the federal deficit by $350 billion.  And have you learnt how a lot I reduce it this yr?  (Applause.)  Lower — reduce this yr — by the top of September, I’ll have reduce the federal funds by $1 trillion 400 billion — reduce the deficit.  (Applause.) 

So, after they begin speaking about you being large spenders, simply level them to that. 

However right here’s the purpose: Republicans are speaking about privatizing social safety — privatizing social sec- —


THE PRESIDENT:  No, I — this isn’t a jo- — I imply, you understand, we used to listen to these things and assume they didn’t imply it, however they’ve written it down. 

The senator from Wisconsin, Ron Johnson, promised once more that in the event that they regain energy, they’re going to eliminate the Reasonably priced Care Act. 

What does that imply?  It implies that if any of you who’ve a preexisting situation will routinely lose insurance coverage.  As a result of the insurance coverage firms are capable of — proper now, due to the Reasonably priced Care Act, nobody will be denied insurance coverage as a result of they’ve a preexisting situation.  It’s the one factor that —

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  (Inaudible.)

THE PRESIDENT:  — no.  And by the — we’re speaking 90 million individuals with preexisting circumstances gone.  Gone.

They tried to do it about 17 instances final — beneath Trump.  We had been capable of cease them.

However, people, it is a totally different world.  I don’t know the place they reside.  (Laughter.)  No, I’m not joking.  That’s why elections have penalties, and that’s why they matter, and that’s why what we’re doing right here is so essential.

Let me shut with this: We’ve made unbelievable cogress [sic] on the — progress on the economic system from the place we had been a yr and half in the past.  We obtained an extended approach to go due to inflation and due to the — I name it “the Putin tax improve” — “Putin” due to gasoline and all that grain he’s retaining from having the ability to get to the market.

Now I’m combating like hell to decrease prices on the issues that you just speak about round your kitchen desk.  My dad used to say, “On the finish of the day, it’s simply, if you sit at that desk, do you find the money for to pay for every thing you want?”  Not quite a bit over.  Do you find the money for to pay for every thing you want?

Whereas Republicans do nothing to [but] impede our efforts to decrease your gasoline taxes — I’ve proposed that and I’ve requested the Congress to remove the federal gasoline tax for the following — so long as this disaster goes on; to decrease meals costs, decrease healthcare prices; hopefully quickly, decrease your prescription drug prices. 

By the way in which, you’ve obtained a — you bought a Republican chief in the USA Senate. 

I used to be capable of work out one thing with Intel.  They’re going to supply for over 7,000 jobs on this state, out of Columbus — (applause) — making laptop chips.

Properly, there’s one other invoice that, if we get it handed — and my guys are working like hell to cross it — it’ll create one other $100 million [billion] in investments in Ohio, creating extra jobs.  (Applause.) 

However have you learnt what?  You already know what the Republican chief is saying?  If, in actual fact, we cross the regulation that claims Medicare can negotiate drug costs like they will for the navy; if, in actual fact, we cross the plan that claims we’re going to boost taxes on multi-millionaires so they begin paying their fair proportion, then he’s going to dam the passage of the laws that can present for one more $100 billion invested on this state.

People, this isn’t proper.  This isn’t proper.  And that’s why this election goes to be so darn essential.  The hot button is that we simply have to recollect who constructed this nation.  (Applause.)  I do know I bear in mind.   

Tomorrow, I’ll be awarding the best honor that may be given to a civilian, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, to our pricey good friend the late Wealthy Trumka, who fought so rattling laborious to guard — (applause) — for the safety of those pensions.  He as soon as mentioned unions — quote, “We do America’s work.”  Unions do America’s work.  (Applause.)  

This Fourth of July, let’s bear in mind who — who’s the spine of this nation.  It’s you, the American employee.  I promised you I might be probably the most pro-labor, pro-union, pro-worker President in our historical past.  And there’s one other promise I’m going to be retaining as properly.  (Applause.)  So, let me inform you one thing: There’s no different place I need to be than proper right here with the employees on this room and the employees that constructed America.  (Applause.) 

I see you, I hear you, and I’ll all the time have your again.  I promise.  God bless you.  And should God defend our troops.  Thanks, thanks, thanks.  (Applause.) 

3:47 P.M. EDT