Apr 29, 2021
Joe Biden Georgia Speech Transcript: First 100 Days of Presidency, American Jobs Plan
President Joe Biden gave a speech on the first 100 days of his presidency in Georgia on April 29, 2021. Read the transcript of his speech remarks here.
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Jill Biden: (00:44)
Wow, what a great crowd. Thanks for coming. Thank you, Long. Joe and I had the chance to see our friends. We just saw them, President and former First Lady Carter, and they are such a powerful reminder that serving our country isn’t limited to the office you hold. The Carter’s continue their work, making our country stronger every day, and we are grateful and honored for their friendship.
Jill Biden: (01:20)
And wow, I’m so glad to be with all of you. Thank you for being here. From Columbus to Albany, Macon to Atlanta, I’ve always felt so at home here, and I’m especially excited to be back in the state that sent Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff to the Senate. And you know, Georgia, we could not have passed the American Rescue Plan without you.
Jill Biden: (02:02)
In some ways it’s hard to believe that it’s already been 100 days. Back in D.C., we’re still getting to know our new home, figuring out where the light switches are, and remembering to use coasters on the historic furniture.
Jill Biden: (02:21)
But in other ways, we’ve packed so much into the time that’s just flown by. I’ve already traveled to schools and community colleges across the country, visited vaccine sites and military bases, and charted the course for our Joining Forces initiative. So thank you to all the military who are here. And that’s just my office. Across the administration, we’ve made historic progress all because of the historic leadership of my husband.
Jill Biden: (03:07)
You hear them honking their horns for you, Joe? And what drew me to Joe all those years ago was his fortitude. Beneath his kindness, his charm, and good humor was a man of action who always kept his promises, did the necessary work and showed up when it mattered, and that’s why I have always believed that he would be the president that we need.
Jill Biden: (03:43)
In the first 100 days of this administration, America is seeing the true character of the person that I have known for so long. Whose heart is big enough to comfort the families of more than 500,000 lost, whose vision is ambitious enough to make the investment of a generation, whose determination is strong enough to bring Americans from all walks of life together, whose commitment is stedfast enough to not only keep his promises, but surpass them.
Jill Biden: (04:32)
Joe is a man for this moment and with his leadership, we are rising. I couldn’t be more proud of what he’s done in just 100 days or more hopeful of what we are going to do next. Please help me in welcoming my husband, the President of the United States, Joe Biden.
Joe Biden: (05:22)
Hello Georgia, and the other county back there. I love you. A lot of folks out here tonight. Well, I’m ready to go home because she never says that to me at home. I was, this is worth the trip, hearing that. I am Jill’s husband, it’s obvious to everybody. I never get introduced as she’s my wife, I’m her husband, and I’m proud to be.
Joe Biden: (05:51)
I want to thank Long Tran for being with us tonight. His story is a story of an entire generation, but it’s a story that goes back many generations. Not just in South Vietnam and in Asia, writ large, but all over the world. And in America, it’s the reason why we’re strong. We are the most diverse democracy in the world and we do … There’s not a single thing. I mean this from the bottom of my heart, there’s not a single thing we can’t do when we do it together. So thank you all.
Joe Biden: (06:31)
And I want to thank my friend, Keisha Lance Bottoms, and thanks to democratic members of Congress, Senator Ossoff and Warnock, Representative Sanford Bishop, an old friend, Hank Johnson and Lucy Macbeth. And look, I want to make sure Representative Williams is here. I thought I saw her a moment ago. There you are, okay. And Representative Carolyn Bourdeaux.
Joe Biden: (07:01)
We need to work and help them keep their seats. It’s important. We won the first round, but there’s more coming up. And my good friend and DNC Chair, Jaime Harrison, from South Carolina. And Stacey Abrams, who can be anything she wants to be, from whatever she chooses to president. I want to thank you, Stacy, for empowering the people to vote and to make their voices heard. You’ve been amazing. And most of all, I want to thank you, the people of Georgia.
End detection now! End detection now! End detection now! End detection now! End detection now! End detection now! End detection now! End detection now!
Joe Biden: (07:45)
We’ll give you a microphone.
End detection now! End detection now! End detection now!
Community is not cages! Community is not cages! Community is not cages! Community is not cages!
Joe Biden: (07:59)
Community is not cages! Community is not cages! Community is not cages!
Abolish Ice! Abolish Ice!
Joe Biden: (08:02)
Georgia was … 100 days ago today when I was inaugurated on the steps of the United States Capitol to be your president, and I was looking forward to coming back and seeing these things.
I voted for you! Close migrant detention centers!
Abolish Ice! Abolish Ice!
Close migrant detention centers now, please!
Joe Biden: (08:23)
I agree with you. I’m working on it, man. Give me another five days.
Close detention now! Close detention now!
Joe Biden: (08:37)
Folks, y’all know what they’re talking about. There should be no private prisons period, none, period. That’s what they’re talking about, private detention centers. They should not exist and we are working to close all of them. So folks, look.
[inaudible 00:08:56] we nothing done from you. We don’t need you. Thank you.
Joe Biden: (09:01)
Thank you. All right. Thank you. All right. Okay. Let them go. No, no, no.
Close detention now!
Joe Biden: (09:08)
I promise you, the only things that can keep me from doing that as you keep moving.
I voted for you, please!
Joe Biden: (09:13)
I promise you.
We voted for you too!
Joe Biden: (09:15)
Our families are dying!
Joe Biden: (09:19)
Our families are dying.
Joe Biden: (09:21)
Look, it’s 100 days since I first sat at my desk in the Oval Office and went to work for you and American people.
Our families are dying! Our families are dying!
Joe Biden: (09:30)
I want to thank you and I want to thank the American people because I think we’ve gotten a lot done. I promised even before I was sworn in that I would get, in my first 100 days, 100 million COVID vaccine shots in people’s arms. We’ve lost over 550,000 Americans. Well, we delivered over 220 million COVID shots in the first 100 days.
Joe Biden: (09:58)
We vastly expanded access and we’ve got 100 million doses of vaccine, enough for every single American. And we’ve done it by getting vaccines to some 40,000 pharmacies across the country, 700 community centers. And now everyone over the age of 16 is now eligible to get vaccinated right away. So please do it, get vaccinated now, now, now, now.
Joe Biden: (10:26)
And we promised to deliver emergency relief to the millions of Americans who were in financial distress, and I might add through no fault of their own. So we got out $1,400 checks to the American people, and we kept that promise. 85% of the households in America have gotten those checks. We’ve already sent out more than 160 million checks out the door.
Joe Biden: (10:55)
And I want to stop here and give thanks to both your Senators, Senators’ Ossoff and Warnock for making it happen. Because those two votes, had we not come back and you elected them, those two votes made the difference. It passed by a single vote. And that means we owe special thanks to the people of Georgia. Because of you, the rest of the world, because of your two Senators, the rest of America was able to get the help they got so far.
Joe Biden: (11:25)
The American Rescue Plan would not have passed. So much have we gotten done, like getting checks to people probably would not have happened. So if you ever wonder if elections make a difference, just remember what you did here in Georgia when you elected Ossoff and Warnock. You began to change the environment. And look, because of you, we passed one of the most consequential rescue bills in American history. So what did you do? What did you do with your vote here in Georgia? Well, you changed America. You began to change America and you’re helping us prove that democracy, democracy can still deliver for the people.
Joe Biden: (12:09)
Look, I want to thank you for all of that. All America wants to thank you because here’s what we mean by delivering for the people. We created, in the first 100 days, 1,300,000 new jobs, 1,300,000 jobs in 100 days. That’s more new jobs in the first 100 days of any president in history. Folks, because you.
Joe Biden: (12:38)
And we’re here, just a few more things that we did. We provided food and nutrition assistance for children and families so they don’t go hungry, rental assistance to keep people from being evicted from their homes, loans to small businesses, like Long’s, to keep people, to keep them open and people employed. And we made Georgia eligible to expand Medicaid, which means another 500,000 Georgians can be covered. Excuse me.
Joe Biden: (13:06)
Folks, healthcare should be a right, not a privilege in America.
That’s right. Yeah.
Joe Biden: (13:12)
And Here’s the thing I’m most proud of. We are on track to cut child poverty in half this year by having passed the Child Tax Credit, in half. But as much as we’ve done, we got a lot more to do. That’s why I proposed the American Jobs Plan. It’s a once in a generation investment in America. It’s the biggest jobs plan in this country since World War II. And here’s what it does, it creates jobs rebuilding and modernizing our roads, our highways, our bridges, our ports, our airports. It will provide clean drinking water for every American.
Joe Biden: (13:55)
There are 10 million homes in America and there are 400,000 schools and daycare centers that have lead pipes where drinking the water is a danger. We’re going to replace 100% of those nation’s lead pipes and service lines so every child can have a turn at the faucet and know what they’re drinking is clean water.
Joe Biden: (14:18)
Folks, we’re going to provide reliable high-speed internet everywhere in America, including rural America. 15% of Georgia households do not have internet at all. We’re going to change that, and those infrastructure projects are going to create millions of good paying jobs just installing them.
Joe Biden: (14:35)
We also know that two million women, two million women have dropped out of the workforce during this pandemic, two million. Because too often, they have to choose between whether or not they can get care for their child and their family, or go to work. In the 21st century, infrastructure isn’t just steel and concrete, it’s people, and it’s time we start paying people who come to our homes and care for people that love them and going to take care of them.
Joe Biden: (15:07)
And folks, when a lot of people talk about climate, they forget to mention the most important word. I made a promise when I was down here running that I would, in fact, immediately rejoin the Paris Climate Accord on day one, which we did. And I would have, in the 100 days, a climate summit here in America, inviting all the world’s polluters and all the world’s emitters, including the biggest nations in the world.
Joe Biden: (15:36)
And they came, everyone from Russia to China to the European Union to India, all of them. And do you know what came across? Every single one of those countries, whether they’re going to meet their obligations or not, is finally understanding that taking care of saving the planet is going to create millions of good paying jobs, millions of good paying jobs.
Joe Biden: (16:03)
We’re going to put engineers and construction workers, electricians, electrical workers, building efficient buildings and homes. We’re going to install 500,000 charging stations along the highways we’re going to rebuild, and there’s no reason why the blades for windmills turbines can’t be built in Pittsburgh instead of Beijing. There’s no reason. There’s no reason American workers can’t lead the world in the production of electric vehicles and the batteries propel them.
Joe Biden: (16:35)
We can do what we need to do in saving the planet and yet create millions of good paying jobs, folks. And with all the investments in the American Jobs Plan, here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to buy America. Let me explain what that means. It’s not a violation of any trade agreement. Every tax dollar that we, in fact, get for construction of anything is going to go to be used to buy American products made in America that create American jobs. That’s the way it should be. Because look, folks, Wall Street didn’t build this country. You did, the middle-class did, and unions built the middle class.
Joe Biden: (17:19)
And here’s one final thing I want to mention about the American Jobs Plan. We got a $5 billion investment in that plan for community violence intervention. There’s a lot of work we have to do, there’s a lot of work we have to do, and I want you to know who is responsible for that, Mayor Keisha Bottoms, Keisha Lance Bottoms.
Joe Biden: (17:41)
But folks, we not only have to invest in America, we need to invest in our families. We need to invest in things our families about and need the most. That’s why the American Family Plan does four things and we pay for it all. One, without raising the deficit, it adds four years more guaranteed public education in America. If we were building out our education system to start today, like we did in the last century, did anybody think we’d say 12 years of education is enough to compete and win the competition of the 21st century?
Joe Biden: (18:15)
I don’t think so. So when we did that last century, it made America the best educated and best prepared nation in the world. But the rest of the world has caught up to us now. So my plan provides a universal preschool for every three and four year old in America. Everyone, that’s a game changer. It’s a game changer. And it also provides two years of free community college. That’s a game changer as well.
Joe Biden: (18:42)
Jill is a community college professor, still teaching. She constantly says, “Joe, community colleges can change the lives of students.” She’ll often say, “Look, any country that educates us is going to out-compete us.” She’ll be leading one of these efforts as well.
Joe Biden: (19:00)
But one more thing, we’ve got some great historical black universities and colleges in Georgia, and we’re going to be investing in them and investing in them and increasing Pell grants. They don’t have have the back, all the money that comes from the large universities, but their students are as competent to do anything in the future as anyone else. But here’s the deal, we’re going to provide up to $47 billion over 10 years to increase their capacity to do everything. But Jill was … Cyber security, all those things where the jobs of the future are.
Joe Biden: (19:41)
The second thing we’re going to do, provide quality affordable childcare. I know, I was a single dad for five years when my wife and daughter got killed right after I got elected the United States Senate as a 29-year-old kid. What happened was I was lucky. I had a daughter … I had two boys survived. My daughter and wife were killed, but my two boys survived, and fortunately for me, I had an incredible family.
Joe Biden: (20:08)
My sister, my brother, and my mother and father, they basically moved in and helped me raise my kids. Because although I was a Senator, I was listed as the poorest Senator in history, but … not history, but the years I was there, I couldn’t afford the cost of daycare. I couldn’t afford the cost of childcare, but I had them. I don’t know how I would’ve done it without them. And so I understand how important childcare can be. Under my plan, most folks won’t pay more than 7% of their income for childcare as a max, and the folks who need it the most and can’t afford it all won’t have to spend a dime. That’s important.
Joe Biden: (20:48)
And the third thing is the American Family Plan will finally provide up to 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave. No one, no one should have to choose between a job and a paycheck or taking care of themselves, a loved one, a parent, or a spouse or a child.
Joe Biden: (21:06)
And fourth, the American Family Plan puts money directly into the pockets of millions of families. The American Rescue Plan we passed, we passed the Child Credit. We’re going to expand that Child Credit to families for another five years, families with two kids. That will mean that as much as $7,200 will go into their pockets every year. Georgia, this is a tax cut for more than two million families in Georgia. We’re cutting taxes for people by a tax credit and we’ll lift more than 170,000 children out of poverty right here in America and cut child poverty this year in half.
Joe Biden: (21:46)
Folks, so how are we going to pay for all of this? Well with tax cuts for the middle class and working class families, how are we going to pay for that? Well, it’s real simple. It’s about time the very wealthy and corporations start paying their fair share. It’s about time. It’s simple as that. And folks, I’m not going to bore you with the details, but I promise you no one making under $400,000 a year is going to pay a single additional penny in tax, no one. As I said last night, the middle class and working people in this country already paying enough in taxes. It’s time for the richest 1% of Americans and corporate America to start to do their part.
Joe Biden: (22:30)
Let me just give you a simple fact. Last year, for example, 55 of our largest corporations in America paid $0 in federal tax, zero, and they made $40 billion, not a penny in tax. Folks, if in fact we had a minimum book tax for corporations for just the Fortune 500 companies, just a minimum tax of 15%. I bet all you’d sign up for 15% tax right now. If in fact it was just 15%, we’d raise $230 billion, pay for all this. So folks, I’m trying to punish anyone, but we’ve got to make corporations making 40 billion paying zero is just not right. Something’s seriously wrong here.
Joe Biden: (23:23)
Georgia, I think a lot of you know I ran for president saying we had to heal the soul of this nation, and that’s what we have to do. And the conviction of George Floyd’s murderer is now our opportunity to make some real progress to restore the soul of this country, and we can do it. We can act rational police reform. We can root out systemic racism in our criminal justice system. And with real plans I outlined today, we have a real chance to deliver real equity across the board to everyone, black, white, Latino, Asian-American. Good jobs, good schools, affordable housing, clean air, clean water.
Joe Biden: (24:03)
Look, being able to generate wealth and pass it down through generations is how most folks got there. But it means, how do most of the middle-class folks you know, who are Caucasian or white, how’d they make it well? They were able to get enough money to buy a home and they built equity in that home and they built equity in that home and they passed it on and they passed it on, and that’s how you build wealth. Well, we’re going to make sure that African-Americans, as well as make sure that Latinos and Asian-Americans are able to build that kind of wealth.
Joe Biden: (24:40)
Look, when the vice president and I were in Atlanta last month, we met with leaders of the Asian-American community in Georgia, following the mass shootings here in Atlanta. It was a raw and powerful meeting and a very emotional moment, and some criticized me for speaking out nationally about that hate crime. Some criticized me for saying how ugly and sinister it was. Well since then, because of the two Senators you sent, among others, the United States Senate passed the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, protect Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders from the vicious hate crimes we’ve seen too often and too long. And it passed 94 to one.
Joe Biden: (25:25)
So don’t tell me we can’t make progress. It’s a first step and we have a lot more to do.
Joe Biden: (25:33)
That’s right. If we are to truly heal the soul of America, we need to project that sacred right of protected to vote. In this state of Dr. King and John Lewis, you know how precious and how precarious the right to vote is. In November and then again in January, your vote changed the world, not just north, the world. But instead of celebrating that, it’s being attacked. More people voted for president in 2020 than any time in American history ever and they did it in the middle of a pandemic.
Joe Biden: (26:18)
You’ve seen what’s happening here in Georgia with your state’s laws, it’s just wrong, wrong. And it’s why we have to pass the voting rights protection laws coming through the Congress. Right now, H.R. 1 and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act both should be passed now.
Joe Biden: (26:37)
So folks it’s only been 100 days, but I have to tell you, I’ve never been more optimistic about the future in America. America is on the move again. We’re choosing hope over fear, truth over lies, light over darkness, and we’re working. We’re working again. We’re dreaming again. We’re discovered again, and we’re leading the world again. And you’re proving democracy can deliver for the people. We just need to remember who we are. We are the United States of America and there’s nothing, nothing, nothing we can not do if we do it together. So let’s stay together.
Joe Biden: (27:17)
God bless you all and may God protect our troops. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you, Georgia. I see two guys in the back I want to come here.