President Biden describes plan to address economic crisis
On Friday afternoon, President Biden delivered remarks about his plan to address the economic crisis.
the president. Eventually, the vice president is entering the room. He's approaching the podium. The event is about good afternoon, folks. Vice President Harrison. I just received a briefing from our economic team, and we remain in once in a century public health crisis. That's led to the most unequal job and economic crisis in modern history, and the crisis is only deepening. It's not getting better. It's deepening. Yesterday we learned that 900,000 more Americans file for unemployment 900,000. They joined millions of Americans who, through no fault of their own, have lost the dignity and respect that comes with the job in a paycheck. So many of them never thought they'd ever be out of work in the first place. And just like my dad did when he was used to lie awake at night when I was a kid staring at the ceiling and unable to sleep because he worried about whether or not he's about to lose his health care, or whether we were gonna be a have the money to pay the mortgage because of the economic circumstances. And now a lot of these folks are facing eviction are waiting hours in their cars, literally hours in their cars, waiting Thio able to feed their Children As I drive up to a food bank, United States of America. They're waiting to feed their kids, folks who are able to still keep their job. Many have seeing their paychecks reduced, and they've barely hanging on and wondering what's next. Sometimes the anxiety about what's gonna happen next is more consequential than what actually happened. But this is happening today in America, and this cannot be who we are as a country. These air, not the values of our nation. We cannot will not let people go hungry. We cannot let people be evicted because of nothing. They did themselves. They cannot watch people lose their jobs and we have to act. We have to act now. It's not just to meet the moral obligation to treat our fellow Americans with the dignity respect they deserve. This is an economic imperative, ah, growing economic consensus that we must act decisively and boldly to grow the economy for all Americans, not just for tomorrow, but in the future. There's a growing course of topic top economists that agree that at this moment of crisis with this, the interest rates as low as they are historic lows. It is smart fiscal investment, including deficit spending, and they're more urgent than ever, you know, and that return on these investments and jobs and racial equity is gonna prevent long term economic damage and benefits that they're in a far surpassed the cost. If we don't act, the rest of the world is not standing still in terms of the competitive advantage of the competitive possibilities relative us that our debt situation will be more stable, will not less stable, according these economists, and that such investments in our people is going to strengthen our economic competitiveness as a nation and help us out compete our competitors in the global economy because we're gonna grow the economy with these investments. While the Kobe 19 package that passed in December was the first step, as I said at the time, it's just a down payment. We need Mawr action, and we need to move fast. Last week I laid out a two step plan of rescue and recovery to get through the crisis and to a better and stronger and more secure America. The first step of our American rescue plan is a plan to tackle the pandemic and get direct financial relief to Americans who need it the most, you know, and just a few days, it's just just been a few days since outlined this plan and to receive bipartisan support from majority of American mayors and governors, businesses and labor organizations have together welcomed it as a urgent action is needed. Even Wall Street firms have underscored its importance. In fact, in an analysis by Moody's estimates that if we pass our American rescue plan, Theo Economy would create 7.5 million jobs just in this year alone, that would be on the way to the more than 18 million I think is 18,600,000 jobs that they believe will be created over the four year period. With our bill back, Better recovery plan With our American rescue plan, our economy would return to full employment a full year faster than without the plan. Even President Trump's president, Trump's now not some liberal organization President Trump's top former economic adviser, Kevin Hassett, said quote he absolutely is in favor of this rescue plan. This almost doesn't have a partisan piece to it. We're seeing the support because this plant takes a step that we so urgently need more than just a step number steps. It funds big parts of the covert 19 national strategy that were released yesterday. We released yesterday. Our national strategy puts on us on a war footing to aggressively speed up our covert 19 response, especially on vaccines and testing and reopen in our schools. I found it fascinating yesterday. The press asked the question is, uh you know, 100 million enough week before they're sent. Biden you crazy? You can't do 200 days. Well, we're gonna, God willing, not only do 100 million, we're gonna do more than that. But this is we have to do this. We have to move. The American rescue plan also includes economic leaf For most Americans who are in need. We're going to finish the job of getting a total of $2000 in direct payments to folks $600 which has already passed. It's simply not enough if you still have to choose between paying your rent, putting food on the table will extend unemployment insurance benefits for millions of workers beyond the deadline. That's now said, it means that 16 million Americans we're currently relying on unemployment benefits while they look for work can count on these checks continuing to be there in the middle of this crisis. The American rescue plan also addresses the growing housing crisis in America. Approximately 14 million Americans, 14 million have fallen behind on rent, and many risk eviction. If we fail to act, there will be a wave of evictions and foreclosures in the coming months. A Z This pandemic rages on because there's nothing we could do to change the trajectory the pandemic in the next several months. So look, this would overwhelm emergency shelters. Increased covert 19 infections as people have to have nowhere to go in our socially can't socially distance. The American rescue plan asked Congress to provide rental assistance for millions of hard hit families and tenants. This will also be abridged economic recover for countless mom and pop landlords who can't afford not to have the rent, but they can't wait. So on Inauguration Day, I directed my administration to extend nationwide restrictions on evictions and foreclosures. Thes crises are are straining the budgets of states and cities and tribal communities that are forced to consider laughs and service reductions among the central workers, police officers, firefighters, first responders, nurses are all the risk of losing their jobs. Over the last year, more than 600,000 educators have lost their jobs in cities and towns. American Rescue plan will provide emergency funding to keep these essential workers on the job and maintain essential services. Look, it will also help small businesses that are the engines of our economic growth. When you say small business, most people think the major corporate entities are the ones that hire everybody. These small businesses, the glue that hulk and they're important. But these small business that hold the community, that glue that hold these communities together, they're hurting badly, and they account for nearly half of the entire U. S. Workforce. Now we have our rescue plan, will ride flexible grants, help the hardest his small business, survive the pandemic and low cost capital to help entrepreneurs of all backgrounds create and maintain jobs, plus provide essential goods and services that communities so desperately depend on Look, Our recovery plan also calls for an increase in the minimum wage at 15 at least $15 an hour. No one in America should work 40 hours a week making below the poverty line. $15 gets people above the poverty line. We have so many millions of people working 40 hours a week working on some with two jobs, and they're still below the poverty. Our plan includes access to affordable child care that's gonna enable parents, particularly women, to get back to work. Millions were not working now because they don't have that care. All told, the American rescue plan would live 12 million Americans out of poverty and cut child poverty in half. That's five million Children lifted out of poverty. Are planning, reduce poverty in the black community by one third, reduce poverty and Hispanic community. But almost 40%. I look forward Thio, working with members of Congress of both parties to move quickly to get this American rescue plan to the American people, and then we can move with equal urgency and bipartisanship toe the second step of our economic plan to build back better the recovery plan. It's a plan that's going to make historic investments in infrastructure manufacturing, innovation, research and development and clean energy and so much more that's going to create millions more jobs, good paying jobs, not minimum wage jobs. Well, while we work with members of both parties in the Congress, there are steps that we can and must take right now. For example, on Inauguration Day, I directed my administration to pause student loan repayments for interest for the the interest payments for Americans with federal student loans until at least September. So they're not gonna have to pay until September. They still pay the bill at the stands now, but they will not. A crew interest and they don't have to pay began to pay until September. And we may have to look beyond that, I might add. Today I'm signing an executive order that directs the whole of government. Ah, whole of government effort to help millions of Americans were badly hurting. Requires all federal agencies to do what they could do to provide relief to families, small businesses and communities. And in the days ahead, I expect agencies toe act. Let me touch on two ways. Thes action can help change Americans lives. We need to tackle the growing hunger crisis in America. One in seven households in America 17 More than one in five black and Latino households in America report they do not have enough food to eat. That includes nearly 30 million adults and as many as 12 million Children. And again there in this thing, in this situation, through no fault of their own, it's unconscionable. The American rescue plan provides additional emergency food and nutrition assistance for tens of millions of Children and families to address this crisis. But families literally can't wait another day as a result of the executive order. I'm gonna shortly sign the Department of Agriculture will consider taking immediate steps to make it easier for the hardest. It's families to enroll and claim or generous benefits in the critical Food and Nutrition assistance area. This is gonna help tens of millions of families, especially those who can't provide meals for their kids we're learning remotely at home, are not receiving the regular meal plans that they haven't school for breakfast or lunch. It's gonna also we also need to protect the health and safety the American worker. Right now, approximately 40% of households in America have at least one member with a pre existing condition. Just imagine you're out of work through no fault of your own, you file for unemployment while you're looking for a job, you find one and you get an offer. But then you find out there is a high risk of your getting infected with covert 19 because of your condition, you and your loved one and you and your loved ones have have ever even greater risk of death and serious illness because of the pre existing conditions. So you turn it down right now. If you did that, you could be denied unemployment insurance because you're offering a job. You didn't take it. It's wrong. No one should have to choose between their livelihood and their own health or the health of their loved ones in the middle of a deadly pandemic. Because of the, uh, the executive order I'm about to sign, I expect the Department of Labor to guarantee the right to refuse unemployment employment that will jeopardize your health. And if you do so, you'll still be able to qualify for the insurance. That's a judgment of Labor Department will make. Look, they're just too consequential ways that the action I'm taking today will help people in need another. Another way to help approximate two million veterans maintain their financial footing by pausing federal collections on over payments and debts. Another make sure that federal contractors are receiving taxpayers dollars provide their workers with the pay and benefits they deserve. These air places where federal tax dollars are administered are being made available. Toe build things from ships to staircases, and we let out the federal government lets the contract, and we're gonna make sure that they buy American and are made in America. And here's another. Right now there are up to eight million people that are eligible for direct payments from The Cares Act and a relief bill passed in December. They're entitled of those payments, but there's not an easy way for those folks to assess the access them. So we're making it a priority today to fix that problem and get them relief they're entitled to Look, I'm gonna close and summarize this way. Ah, lot of America is hurting. The virus is surging. We're 400,000 dead. Expected Thio reach well over 600,000 families are going hungry. People are risk of being a victim. Job losses air mounting again. We need act. No matter how you look at it, we need to act. If if we act now, our economy will be stronger and both short and long run. That's what economists left, right and center telling us both liberal and conservative will be better and stronger across the board if we act now, will be better able to compete with world. If we act now, we better able to meet our moral obligations toe one another as Americans. I don't believe the people of this country just want to stand by and watch their friends, their neighbors, co workers, fellow Americans go hungry, lose their homes and lose their sense of dignity and hope and respect. I don't believe that especially in the middle of a pandemic that's so weakened and wrecked, so much havoc and caused so much pain on America. That's not who we are. The bottom line is this were in a national emergency. We need to act like we're in a national emergency, so I've got to move with everything we've got. We got to do it together. I don't believe Democrats or Republicans are going hungry and losing jobs. I believe Americans are going hungry and losing their jobs. We have the tools to fix it. We have the tools to get through this. We have the tools to get this virus under control and our economy back on track. We have the tools to help people, so let's use the tools. All of them use them now. So I'm gonna sign this executive order. Let me conclude again by saying, Folks, this is one of the cases Where? Business, Labor, Wall Street, Main Street, liberal conservative economists? No. We have to act now not only to help. People are in need now, but to allow us to be in a competitive position worldwide and be the leader of the world economy in the next year and two and three and going forward. So thank you. I'm going to sign this executive order. The first one is the economic relief related to Cover 19 Pandemic. Really, The second one is protection, protecting the federal work for Thank you very much, Mr President, do you support Mitch McConnell's timeline for a February impeachment trial? I haven't heard the detail of it, but I do think that having some time to get our administration up and running with a I want to thank the the Senate for passing out our Secretary of Defense. Looks like our Secretary of Treasury. It looks like our Secretary of States in place. So the more time we have to get up and running to meet these crises the better. Thank you. Anything to say on Hank Aaron? Mr. President? Any comments on Hank Aaron? Yeah. What did he say on