President Biden’s Joint Session Address


[Applause] Now, after just 100 days, I can report to the nation, America is on the move again. We have to do more than just build back better. We have to compete more strenuously than we have. Nearly 90% of the infrastructure jobs created in American Jobs Plan do not require a college degree. 75% don’t require an associate’s degree. The American jobs plan is a blue collar blueprint to build America. That’s what it is. China and other countries are closing in fast. We have to develop and dominate the products and technologies of the future. So let’s get to work. I wanted to lay out before the Congress my plan, before we got into the deep discussions. I’d like to meet with those who have ideas that are different. They think are better. I welcome those ideas, but the rest of the world is not waiting for us. I just want to be clear, from my perspective, doing nothing is not an option. The war in Afghanistan, as we remember the debates here, were never meant to be multigenerational undertakings of nation building. We went to Afghanistan to get terrorists, the terrorists who attacked us on 9/11 and after 20 years of value, valor and sacrifice, it’s time to bring those troops home. Congress needs to pass legislation this year to finally secure protection for Dreamers. [Applause] The young people who’ve only known America has their home. And permanent protection for immigrants who are here on temporary protected status, who came from countries beset by man-made and natural-made violence and disaster. As well as a pathway to citizenship for foreign workers who put food on our tables. Look, immigrants have done so much for America during this pandemic and throughout our history. The country supports immigration reform, we should act, let’s argue over it, let’s debate it, but let’s act. As I stand here tonight before you in a new and vital hour of life and democracy of our nation, and I can say with absolute confidence, I have never been more confident or optimistic about America, not because I’m president, because of what’s happening with the American people. We’ve stared into the abyss of insurrection and autocracy, pandemic and pain, and we the people did not flinch.

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