President Joe BidenThe $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill was passed. Congress late on Friday night would “transform” the US transportation system, help tackle the climate crisisYou can create millions of new jobs.
To persuade Democrats to support the bill, the president had to postpone his weekend trip to Delaware. The bill had been delayed in Congress because progressives pressed moderate colleagues to support the Build back Better programme of social spending.
The White House hopes that second – and more contentious – bill will be agreed to before Thanksgiving.
In a statement shortly after the infrastructure bill was passed, Mr Biden said: “Tonight, we took a monumental step forward as a nation.
“The United States House of Representatives passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, a once-in-generation bipartisan infrastructure bill that will create millions of jobs, turn the climate crisis into an opportunity, and put us on a path to win the economic competition for the 21st Century.
“It will create good-paying jobs that can’t be outsourced. These jobs will transform our transportation system by making the largest investments in passenger and cargo rail, roads and bridges, ports and airports, and public transport in decades.
“This will make it easier for companies to get goods to market more quickly and reduce supply chain bottlenecks now and for decades to come. This will lower inflation and cost-savings for working families.
“The bill will create jobs replacing lead water pipes so every family can drink clean water.
“It will make high-speed internet affordable and available everywhere in America.
“This bill will make historic and significant strides that take on the climate crisis. It will establish the nation’s first national network of electric vehicle charging points. We will make America more competitive in manufacturing solar panels, wind farm batteries, and electric cars. This will allow us to reward companies for paying high wages and sourcing materials from the United States. It will also allow us to export these products to the rest of the world.
“It will also make historic investments in environmental clean-up and remediation, and build up our resilience for the next superstorms, droughts, wildfires, and hurricanes that cost us billions of dollars in damage each year.
“I’m also proud that a rule was voted on that will allow for passage of my Build Back Better Act in the House of Representatives the week of November 15th.
“The Build Back Better Act will be a once-in-a-generation investment in our people.
“It will lower bills for healthcare, child care, elder care, prescription drugs, and preschool. Middle-class families also get a tax cut.
“This bill is also fiscally responsible, fully paid for, and doesn’t raise the deficit. It does so by making sure the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations begin to pay their fair share and doesn’t raise taxes a single cent on anyone making less than $400,000 per year. I look forward signing these bills into law.
“Generations from now, people will look back and know this is when America won the economic competition for the 21st Century.”