PORTAGE, Mich. (NEXSTAR) — President Joe Biden on Friday made his second trip to the Midwest in the same week, visiting the Michigan plant where Pfizer is cranking out COVID-19 vaccines.
He used the trip to urge people to get vaccinated and called on Republicans to back his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package.
“This is a case of life and death,” Biden said.
Double-masked alongside Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer at the plant in Portage, Michigan, Biden met with workers and Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. Bourla assured reporters production is booming and said the plant is working to ramp it up even further.
“We are now going to run at capacity, so good news,” he said.
Despite recent delivery setbacks caused by nasty winter weather, Biden said his administration is doing everything it can to get some 600 million doses out the door.
“There will be enough vaccines for every American by July,” Biden promised, though he noted that doesn’t mean every shot will be administered by then.
He went on to say his massive COVID-19 relief plan will save lives and bolster the economy.
“Moody’s estimates that if we pass my American Rescue Plan, the economy will create 7 million jobs this year,” he said.
Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich., who was also at Pfizer Friday, said Congress must act.
“Bottom line: People in this country are looking for assistance and we’re going to move a package forward,” he said.
Republicans are still not on board, saying the price tag is too big and the package not targeted enough.
“I want to make sure we have laser-focused relief on people who need it the most as opposed to taking a shotgun and shooting it in the air,” Sen. Roger Marshall, R-Kan., said. “If we print another $2 trillion, it could cause more inflation and actually backfire.”
Biden said he’s open to Republican input but wants the package passed by mid-March.
“This is the United States of America, for God’s sake,” he said. “We invest in people.”