President Joe Biden laid out what he has done for the U.S. economy in his first six months in a speech at the White House on July 19. Biden said that his American Rescue Plan is “just one example of how we’re building an economy from the bottom up and the middle out.”
“We’ve brought this economy back from the brink,” Biden said during his speech. “And we designed our strategy not only to provide for a temporary boost, but to lay the foundation for a long-term boom that brings everyone along.”
Here are some of the president’s other remarks from his speech on July 19.
Biden said that the U.S. has added 600,000 jobs per month under his presidency.
During his speech, Biden addressed former President Donald Trump’s 2020 campaign claim that America “will have a depression, the likes of which you’ve never seen” under a Biden presidency.
“Well, it’s true that the economy was sputtering before I got here, adding only 60,000 jobs per month for the three months before I was sworn in. But now, six months later, we’ve changed that,” Biden said on July 19. “We’ve gone from 60,000 jobs per month to 60,000 jobs every three days—more than 600,000 jobs per month since I took office. More than 3 million new jobs all told. That’s the fastest growth, I’m told, at this point in any administration’s history.”
The U.S. has experienced its highest economic growth rate in nearly 40 years.
Biden also rebuffed the criticism that his presidency would bring about the end of capitalism. “Well, in six months into my administration, the U.S. economy has experienced the highest economic growth rate in nearly 40 years,” he said.
The president also cited the “war-time effort” to get America vaccinated and to pass the American Rescue Plan. “We did both those things,” he said. “And now, the forecasters have doubled their projections for growth this year in the economy to 7 percent or higher. In fact, the U.S. is the only developed country in the world where growth projections today are stronger than they were before the pandemic hit.”
Biden cited a raise in salaries and a drop in unemployment claims across the country. “So, for all those predictions of doom and gloom, six months in, here’s where we stand: record growth, record job creation, workers getting hard-earned breaks,” he added.
Biden is focusing on infrastructure improvements, which he said will “take the pressure off inflation.”
Biden also hyped up his infrastructure plans, his speech coming on the same day that his administration was struggling to salvage a nearly $600 billion bipartisan infrastructure agreement, according to The New York Times.
“If we make a prudent, multi-year investments in better roads, bridges, transit systems, and high-speed Internet, and a modern, resilient electric grid, here’s what will happen: It breaks up the bottlenecks in our economy,” Biden said. “Goods get to consumers more rapidly and less expensively. Small businesses create and innovate much more seamlessly. If we increase the availability of quality, affordable childcare, eldercare, paid leave, more people will enter the workforce.”
The president added that these steps will enhance productivity, boost the U.S. workforce, and “take the pressure off inflation.”
“Our economy has come a long way over the last six months. We can’t slow down now,” he concluded. “We can make this boom we’re experiencing today one that will ensure that all Americans have an opportunity to share in it for years to come. And we can show the world that American democracy can deliver for the people.”