Joe Biden

Remarks on Rebuilding Domestic Manufacturing Capacity

February 08, 2022

The President. Jane, thank you. Thank you very, very much. I want to thank Secretary Granholm and Buttigieg and Gina McCarthy for being here today.

And Congressman Jim Cooper, an old friend who did an awful lot to get this to go in Tennessee, who's here today. And Governor Bill Lee of Tennessee—he deserves credit as well. He wasn't able to be here today, but he worked hard to help make this happen. Another example of what America can achieve when we come together—Democrats and Republicans—to get things done.

The new manufacturing facility Tritium is—that it's announced today is more than just great news for Tennessee. Yes, it's going to create more than 500 good-paying jobs in Tennessee, but it's going to deliver greater dignity and a little more breathing room to workers and their families. And it's going to have a ripple effect beyond—and far beyond one State. This is great news for workers across the country, for an economy, and frankly, for the planet.

When we wrote the—and passed the bipartisan infrastructure law, we included $7.5 billion for electric vehicle chargers, like the one Jane brought along today. It's a little thing. You can see.

But all kidding aside, Secretaries Granholm and Buttigieg have been helping lead this effort from our administration. And later this week, we're going to announce a State-by-State allocation for $5 billion of the funding for these chargers. So States can start making plans to build out what will become a national network of electric vehicle chargers.

Tritium's new facility is going to produce up to 30,000 of these chargers every year. They'll use American parts, American iron, American steel. And they'll be installed up and down the highways and corridors in our communities all across the country by union workers from the IBEW and the electric—and the electrical workers union. So the benefits you're going to—ripple thousands of miles away in every direction.

And these jobs will multiply in steel mills, small parts suppliers, construction sites all over the country in the years to come. And it's going to help ensure that the American—America leads the world in electric vehicles.

China has been the—leading that race up to now. But this is about to change, because America is building convenient, reliable, equitable, national public charging networks. So wherever you live, charging an electric vehicle will be quick and easy. And the foundation will help build—help American automakers set the pace for electric vehicles, which means even more good-paying jobs producing batteries, materials, and parts.

That's also going to help save hundreds of billions of gallons of gasoline over time, serving—saving an average driver who chooses an electric vehicle up to a thousand dollars every year on fuel; making our country more economically competitive, lowering air pollution, and keeping families healthier as we tackle climate—the climate crisis.

Here's the key point. Announcements like this don't happen by accident. They require a vision and a commitment to build a future that's made in America. I made it clear from day one: When the Federal Government spends taxpayers' dollars, we're going to buy American: American products made in America, including American component parts.

That's why I established a Made in America Office at the White House led by Celeste Drake. She's here on the stage. Where is Celeste? There is she is. Celeste Drake. To ensure that the trillion dollars we're investing in infrastructure is spent on American workers and American manufacturing.

On the way over here, by the way, I was talking with Gina. We were talking about—we have how many vehicles in a fleet, Gina, roughly?

White House National Climate Adviser Regina McCarthy. Six hundred thousand.

The President. We have 600,000 Federal vehicles that we—the Federal Government owns. They're going to all end up being electric vehicles—electric vehicles. That's what it means to finally make "buy in America" a reality and not an empty promise.

It means bringing manufacturing jobs back and building supply chains here at home so we have better jobs at [and]* lower prices. And it means a Federal Government that just doesn't give lip service to "buy American," but actually takes action, investing in innovation and manufacturing, which powers up companies like Tritium to do what they do best: create great products and good-paying jobs.

That's been my approach from day one. And now we're seeing the results—beginning to see the results. In my first full year as President, the economy created 6.6 million new jobs. 6.6 million. That's never happened before in American history. And that includes 375,000 manufacturing jobs. Twenty-twenty-one saw the highest increase in U.S. manufacturing jobs in nearly 30 years.

And let me give you one example. A few weeks ago, the CEO of Intel, Pat Gelsinger, came to the White House to announce a new $20 billion semiconductor factory that they're going to—they call it a "campus"—outside of Columbus, Ohio. I had the two Senators from Ohio here standing with me: one Republican, one Democrat. Creating 7,000 construction jobs at that facility and 3,000 permanent jobs running the facility with an average salary—running the facility at $135,000 a year.

Those semiconductors, microchips power virtually everything in our everyday lives: cellphones, automobiles, refrigerators, the internet, the electric grid. Without semiconductors, those things are not—cannot fully function.

So the spinoff of this is that we're going to create thousands of additional jobs helping build America's products here in America, manufacturing automobiles, appliances, and so much more. And it's going to help ease inflation.

One of the reasons automobiles cost so much is—they're responsible for one-fifth of the recent inflation—is because they lack semiconductors. They're not able to build them quick enough so the price goes up higher because there's fewer to sell. Intel's announcement helps us fix that problem. And Intel isn't alone.

Since 2021, companies have announced investments totaling more than $200 billion in domestic manufacturing here in America, from iconic companies like GM and Ford building out new electric vehicle production; to Tesla, our Nation's largest electric vehicle manufacturer; to innovative younger companies like Rivian, building electric trucks, or Proterra, building electric buses, which I saw at a virtual tour last year when I met with the CEO virtually. And they really impressed me.

These companies joining Intel, bringing microchip manufacturing back to America after decades of decay—from Texas Instruments to Samsung in Texas, to TSMC in Arizona. We're seeing the beginnings of an American manufacturing comeback. This is not hyperbole, this is real. This is genuine. This is real.

You've heard me say all along when I was running and since I've gotten here: the world is at an inflection point. Things are going to change in big ways. And this is one of those transition moments.

Two weeks ago, I went to Pittsburgh, where the Union Pacific Railroad announced the largest purchase of American-made battery—excuse me, electric-battery locomotives in history, built by American workers in Erie, Pennsylvania.

And these locomotives aren't only going to be sold here in America and take a hell of a lot of—heck of a lot of pollution out of the air. They're going to be sold in countries around the world that are going to be buying them, just like they're going to buy American-made electric cars.

And just like we heard last week when Boeing announced $20 billion—a $20 billion bill—$20 billion deal right here in the White House to sell American-made aircraft to one of the major airlines in the Middle East, Qatar Airways, supporting tens of thousands of good-paying American manufacturing jobs.

So we're seeing the same thing in planes, trains, and automobiles.

Other countries recognize what's happening here. They want to buy American as well. They're ready to bet on America and American workers, workers who built the middle class, earning good pay and benefits and the right to organize. Today's announcement is part of the drumbeat of jobs resurgence like anything—more than anything we've seen before.

And by the way, House of Representatives passed a bill on Friday providing over $90 billion for research and development, manufacturing, and all those elements of the supply chain needed to produce end products right here in America. We can keep delivering more announcements like this one. And the House and Senate are working to deliver a final bill to my desk.

The bottom line is the United States is in a position to outcompete the world once again. And I look forward to working with Governors—Republican and Democrat—to keep that drumbeat going.

So let's keep coming together to invest in the backbone of America, in American manufacturing, and the workers who make it run, because when we do, there's no limit to what we can achieve. None.

Thank you, and may God protect our troops. We've got a lot to look forward to. Thank you very much.

Q. Mr. President, how was Macron's meeting with Putin? How was Macron's meeting with Putin, Mr. President?

Q. [Inaudible]—that Tritium is building in a right-to-work State? It's a right-to-work State. No unions, sir.

NOTE: The President spoke at 2:22 p.m. in the South Court Auditorium of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Executive Office Building. In his remarks, he referred to Jane Hunter, chief executive officer, Tritium, who introduced the President; Sens. Robert J. Portman and Sherrod C. Brown; and Jack Allen, nonexecutive chairman of the board of directors, Proterra, in his former capacity as chief executive officer and chairman of the board. He also referred to H.R. 4521. A reporter referred to President Emmanuel Macron of France; and President Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin of Russia.

* White House correction.

Joseph R. Biden, Remarks on Rebuilding Domestic Manufacturing Capacity Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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