Jobs/Employment

Biden increases efforts to boost manufacturing and union jobs

The president said union workers are going to "transform America" as they build roads, lay internet cable and install electric vehicle chargers.

President Joe Biden at the NABTU conference in Washington
Andrew Harnik / AP

President Joe Biden is increasing efforts to boost manufacturing and union jobs. 

"Under my predecessor, 'Infrastructure Week' was a punchline. On my watch, we're making 'Infrastructure Decade' a headline," President Biden said while speaking at North America's Building Trades Union National Legislative Conference in Washington on Tuesday. 

He said his administration has already announced over 25,000 infrastructure projects in 4,500 towns nationwide. 

The Inflation Reduction Act makes a significant investment in fighting climate change, and offers rebates and tax credits for energy-efficient appliances, weatherized homes and electric vehicles — but it will also help put more Americans to work, according to President Biden.

"Guess who will install those 500,000 charging stations? The [International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers]. Guess who will build the roads, highways, and bridges to get there? Laborers, iron workers, operating engineers, sheet metal workers — the women and men right here in this room," President Biden said. 

"Union workers will build roads and bridges, lay internet cable, install electric vehicle chargers. Union workers are going to transform America. And union workers are going to finish the job," President Biden continued. 

The president said he doesn't want to utilize companies from overseas for cheap labor, like administrations before him have done. He said that all construction materials must be made in America, which includes "lumbar, glass, drywall, fiber-optic cable, and so much more." 

He also said all federal projects will be built by American workers. 

The president said he's using a "blue collar blueprint to rebuild America." 

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President Biden gave continuous kudos to unions, crediting them for building the nation. 

"Wall Street didn't build America, the middle class built America, and unions built the middle class," he said. 

President Biden showed no shame in showing love to unions. 

"I make no apologies for being labeled the most pro-union president in the United States of America — I'm proud of it," he said. 

The president took pride in his efforts, pointing to an all-time high for construction jobs in the nation, a low unemployment rate and fast-paced growth for manufacturing jobs. 

"Our economic plan is working, now we have to finish the job," said the president. 

President Biden's remarks in Washington come on the same day he officially announced he will run for reelection in 2024, with "Let's finish the job" being a key slogan throughout his campaign video.

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