Joe Biden had a clear message in his first speech to Congress as president: I’ll get you a job.
The word “jobs” appears 43 times in Biden’s prepared text, a document he largely stuck to as he addressed lawmakers and the nation on Wednesday night from the House chamber.
While the U.S. is adding jobs and the economy is strengthening, the commander-in-chief made plain that he’s not satisfied with the 6% unemployment rate and the damage to the labor market wrought by the coronavirus pandemic.
Biden used the word “job” or “jobs” when discussing his “American Jobs Plan” infrastructure proposal. It will, he said, “create millions of good paying jobs — jobs Americans can raise their families on.”
He deployed the word “jobs” when discussing climate change.
“For me, when I think about climate change, I think jobs,” he said.
And he invoked lost jobs when taking tax-evading companies to task.
“They benefit from tax loopholes and deductions that allow for offshoring jobs and shifting profits overseas,” he said.
By invoking jobs with such frequency, Biden is appealing to a still-skeptical group of Republicans who have, to date, largely panned his infrastructure and safety-net proposals, as well as directly to voters.
proposal in particular is the subject of intense discussions with Republicans, who have proposed a far less expensive plan. And as he has done before, he said he welcomed ideas on infrastructure but said doing nothing is not an option.
“Investments in jobs and infrastructure like the ones we’re talking about have often had bipartisan support,” he said, and applauded GOP senators who have their own proposal.