Michigan lawmakers respond to Biden’s first address to Congress

Michigan

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — President Joe Biden delivered his first joint address to Congress Wednesday night.

During his speech, Biden said the nation is “turning peril into possibility.” He also celebrated progress made toward the coronavirus pandemic, pushing Congress to pass a $1.8 trillion stimulus package. The package would focus on children, families and education.

Several Michigan lawmakers responded after Biden spoke to the nation.

GOV. GRETCHEN WHITMER

“Tonight, as he approaches his 100th day in office on Friday, President Biden spoke to the American people about the promises he’s delivered on and outlined his plans to help us build back better from the pandemic.

“His agenda makes game-changing investments in the fundamental, kitchen-table issues that I ran on—schools, small businesses, families, infrastructure—and towards our future. Thanks to the administration’s competent leadership at every level, we have put over 230 million shots in arms, delivered checks to millions of Michigan’s working families, and had meaningful conversations about policies and solutions instead of lurching from distraction to disaster. I am proud to have a partner in the White House, and I look forward to pairing the federal dollars available to us with state resources to create jobs, invest in our kids and schools, build up roads and bridges, and expand job training programs. Looking ahead, I urge Congress to pass the American Jobs and Families Plans so we can work together to create tens of millions of good-paying jobs, build up our infrastructure, and give families childcare, pre-K, and paid leave. Let’s get it done.”  

LT. GOV. GARLIN GILCHRIST

“In this short amount of time, the Biden-Harris administration has made it clear that, even in the face of unprecedented challenges, our nation will build back better and set a path toward generational success as we overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This administration is recognizing the shortcomings of the systems in place—systems that often leave communities of color underserved and disconnected from opportunity. I am encouraged to see that President Biden shares Governor Whitmer’s and my values regarding the importance of access to safer affordable childcare. As a father of three young children, I understand just how critical this is for Michigan families. The American Families Plan will provide economic security by equitably ensuring that everyone can contribute to our economy while caring for their loved ones. Clear, conscientious leadership has returned to the Oval Office with Biden-Harris administration, and I am confident that future policies and plans will be put in place that will protect, uplift, and inspire all Americans.”     

U.S. SEN. DEBBIE STABENOW

“During President Biden’s first 100 days in office, more than 1.3 million jobs have been created—the strongest job growth for any president in history in their first 100 days. President Biden has also exceeded his own goal of administering 200 million vaccines and partnered with Democrats in Congress to pass the American Rescue Plan, which has been a lifeline for families and communities in Michigan and across the country. The Biden Administration has truly hit the ground running.

“President Biden has put forward a bold jobs plan that puts the focus back on making things in America, rebuilding America’s neglected infrastructure and strengthening American manufacturing – all big priorities with a big impact on Michigan.

“Tonight, President Biden talked about our most precious resource – our children. His American Families Plan provides a blueprint for educational opportunity and economic security that gives our families what they need to succeed.

“I look forward to working with President Biden to pass this boldonce-in-a-generation investment to rebuild our middle class and invest in America’s future.”

U.S. REP. TIM WALBERG

“President Biden’s early actions in office speak louder than his words tonight. In his first 100 days, the President has catered to the far-left wing of his party. He’s ignored the humanitarian crisis at the southern border, jeopardized American jobs and energy independence, pushed for higher taxes, and proposed a mind-boggling amount of government spending.

“Looking at his time governing, President Biden’s promise to unify the country rings hallow. So far his radical policies, often taken unilaterally, have divided us at every turn. Although the President has embarked on a highly partisan course, it is not too late to right the ship and demonstrate a willingness to reach across the aisle. We must continue to seek out solutions to help students receive a quality education, workers find a good-paying job, and families and small businesses recover from the pandemic.”

U.S. REP. BILL HUIZENGA

“Despite campaigning on a platform of unity, President Biden has put forward a tax and spend agenda the likes of which we have never seen with virtually no Republican input. With the annual federal budget coming in at roughly $4.4 trillion, President Biden has proposed nearly $6 trillion in new spending in the first 100 days of his Administration. This eye-popping spending spree adds up to $17,951.46 for every man, woman, and child in America.

“Instead of governing as a unifier like he promised, President Biden has put forward a highly partisan agenda in 100 days that increases federal spending by a whopping 35% while threatening to eliminate an estimated 1 million jobs through his proposed tax increases. Rather than appease the progressive wing of his base, President Biden could help more American families by adopting a targeted approach that focuses on bipartisan solutions to strengthen our economy, secure our border, and repair our infrastructure in West Michigan and communities across the nation.”

U.S. SEN. GARY PETERS

“After taking office at a time of unprecedented crisis in our country, I am proud of the progress we have made in President Biden’s first 100 days and the relief we delivered to families, small businesses and communities in Michigan and across the country. Through my work as Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, I was pleased to help the President drastically expand vaccine distribution as part of the American Rescue Plan.

“Our work is just getting started as we continue to build back better. President Biden laid out a strong vision for upgrading our infrastructure — our roads, bridges, and access to broadband — and making critical investments in families to ensure they can not only care for their families but prosper.

“In the coming months, I also look forward to continuing to work with the Biden Administration to bolster our domestic manufacturing capabilities and supply chain, spur additional economic growth and strengthen our national security — including to address serious threats facing us here at home.”

U.S. REP. FRED UPTON

“Now that the economy has begun to recover, and there appears to be trillions of dollars still in the pipeline from already approved COVID relief packages, we shouldn’t be proposing trillions more in pipe-dream spending that will either dramatically increase the national debt or raise taxes on small business and families. 

We should follow the path that President Biden himself outlined in his inaugural address calling for bipartisanship and cooperation, which are sorely needed as we begin the discussion on an infrastructure bill.

I’d add that the enactment of 21st Century Cures followed that bipartisan example. The President’s support to update that with a Cures 2.0 and ARPA-H injection of additional research dollars to deal with COVID, cancer, and Alzheimer’s in the years ahead is welcome news and should generate overwhelming bipartisan support.” 

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