He capped his visit to the Ford Rouge plant in Dearborn with a surprise stop to speed his way around the test track.
During his factory tour, he got an advance look at the forthcoming electric version of the Ford F150 Lighting truck. He bragged he got to sit in and said during his remarks he wished he could take it for a spin.
‘I’d sure like to drive it,’ Biden said. ‘I wonder whether or not I can lose the Secret Service and go out to the track.’
He didn’t ditch the Secret Service but he did make a stop at the testing track and get to drive a grey-ish version of the vehicle.
He sped by, later saying he took the truck up 80, and then stopped the truck to speak with the reporters traveling with him.
Biden stuck his head out of the window, wearing his signature aviator sunglasses, and said: ‘This sucker’s quick.’
He said he’d buy one if he could.
The president said the truck goes 0-60 in about 4.4 seconds. He then floored it with a Secret Service agent sitting beside him. The president eventually turned around and honked as he drove by the reporters.
President Joe Biden paused to talk to reporters during his test drive of the new Ford F-150 Lighting, its first electric truck
President Biden took the truck for a spin on the test tracking, saying ‘this sucker’s quick’
President Biden visited the Ford plant in Dearborn, Michigan, to tout electric cars as the future of the auto industry, in his remarks he joked he hoped he got to take one for a test drive
President Biden said the truck goes 0-60 in about 4.4 seconds
Biden is a longtime auto connoisseur.
He ran to the podium to make his remarks and introduced himself as: ‘My name is Joe Biden and I’m a car guy.’
He used his speech to blast Donald Trump, saying his predecessor did nothing on infrastructure.
Biden mocked Trump for talking about infrastructure week without passing any legislation on the issue.
‘They announced infrastructure week and they announced it and announced it and announced it and announced it. Every week for four years and didn’t do a damn thing,’ he said at the Ford factory in Dearborn, Michigan.
Infrastructure became something of a running joke in the Trump years with Trump and his officials touting it as an area they could work with Democrats on – yet no progress was made on the matter.
Biden has yet to make any progress either. The president announced a $2.3 trillion American Jobs Plan with a heavy focus on infrastructure but Republicans denounced its high price tag and its focus on other items, such as money for schools and the climate.
In his remarks, he outlined the future he envisions for the United States, with his infrastructure plan as a way to tackle climate change and create jobs.
‘If we act to save the planet we can create millions good paying jobs, generate significant economic growth opportunity to raise the standard for people not only here, but around the world,’ Biden said.
He argued the future of autos is electric and said the United States can’t let China beat them in the new future of the industry.
‘Right now, China is leading in this race,’ he said.
China is one of the fastest growing markets for electric vehicles. Chinese manufacturers have started selling them in Europe.
‘They will not win this race. We will not let them,’ he said.
‘Folks, the rest of the world is moving fast, or moving ahead, they’re not waiting for the United States of America. Government, labor and industry working together have to step up and we have a playbook that will work,’ Biden added.
He said he’d reverse the Trump administration’s roll back of vehicle emissions. His infrastructure plan includes $174 billion in funding for electric vehicles, charging stations, and incentives for consumer purchases.
He noted his meetings with Republicans on infrastructure and expressed optimism both sides could come together on a deal.
‘We believe we can find a bipartisan deal and infrastructure. And we look forward to hearing more details of their proposal and submit counterproposal either later today or tomorrow, but we make one thing clear. We’ll compromise, but doing nothing is not an option, doing nothing is not an option,’ he said.
But Biden wants to pay for his plan with a new tax on corporations, which Republicans call a non starter. The president wants to raise the corporate income tax from 21% to 28%.
Republicans proposed a smaller, more scaled back plan that focuses on traditional infrastructure. They would pay for it with a combination of user fees, including for electric vehicles, and on redirecting unspent federal dollars.
Biden argues all the elements in his plan pertain to the national infrastructure.
He has said he’d like to see progress by Memorial Day.
‘In terms of where we will be right before or around Memorial Day, our hope is that we will have a better sense on the path forward and what the opportunity is looking ahead,’ White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in her briefing at the White House on Monday.
Biden’s father worked at auto dealerships in Delaware, where Biden grew up. Biden touted his father’s work and his long time to auto unions during his time in Dearborn.
‘Jobs, jobs, union jobs. I’m a union president. Make no bones about it,’ he told workers during a tour of the factory.
In his remarks, President Biden blasted Donald Trump as he touted his infrastructure plan, saying his predecessor did nothing on the matter
President Biden is a longtime auto connoisseur. He ran to the podium to make his remarks and introduced himself as: ‘My name is Joe Biden and I’m a car guy’
President Biden toured the factory and spoke with auto workers
Outside the factory, protesters slammed Biden’s support of Israel
And, after his remarks, he put on his face mask and ran over to greet some workers who were waiting to speak to him.
‘The President is a longtime fan of cars,’ Psaki said on Air Force One during the flight to Michigan. ‘His dad was a car dealer for many years.’
She added the president thinks ‘we should do everything we can from the United States government to support this industry, the backbone of many communities including Michigan and our country. The future of the industry is electric.’
He also wants to make the government’s fleet of vehicles electric.
Psaki was asked about Biden taking a fleet of gasoline guzzling SUVs to his visit to the plant. The motorcade that runs from the airport to the factory would have at least 20 vehicles in it, including the presidential ride know as ‘The Beast.’
‘That is certainly our objective,’ Psaki said when asked if ‘The Beast’ would ever be electric but noted it would take time.
‘I think it’s going to take some time to continue to grow the electric vehicle industry in our country. That’s why the president believes there needs to be a historic investment and certainly he’s talked about what we can do from the federal fleet as well,’ she said.