Biden in red state South Carolina bashes Republicans for voting against his agenda
By The Citizen on July 6, 2023
President Biden went to GOP stronghold South Carolina Thursday to bash Republicans in Congress for voting against his agenda while highlighting legislative victories from his first two years in office.
The president’s visit to The Palmetto State, which former President Trump won by 12 points in the 2020 election, was meant to tout $500 billion in investments that private companies have made in manufacturing and clean energy during Biden’s administration.
“Every Republican member of the House from this state voted to repeal the clean energy provisions of the Inflation Reduction Act that attracts all these jobs,” the president said in his remarks.
“Some of the analyses have said that the laws I’ve signed are going to do more to help red America than blue America; that’s OK with me because you’re all Americans,” Biden added. “My view is wherever the need is most, that’s the place we should be helping.”
The president went after Republicans who voted against either the Democratic-passed Inflation Reduction Act or the bipartisan infrastructure law but who have still since claimed credit for funding approved for their home states through the bills.
He specifically mentioned Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R), who last month touted the $1.4 billion in federal funding his state is set to receive for expanded broadband internet. The funding was authorized through the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure law that passed in 2021, which Tuberville voted against.
“That’s all right, because I’m one of those guys that believes in conversation,” Biden said.
He also called out Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) for supporting part of his agenda while still joining every GOP lawmaker in voting against the Inflation Reduction Act last year.
“I want to thank Senator Graham for voting for the bipartisan infrastructure law and the CHIPS and Science Act, but I wish he had voted for the rest,” the president said.
Biden, speaking in front of a “Bidenomics” backdrop, touted the economic-themed message he has focused on during his reelection bid so far.
“I’m not here to declare victory on the economy; I’m here to say we have a plan that’s turning things around quickly and we have a lot more work to do,” he said.
Biden was joined on his visit by Rep. James E. Clyburn (D-S.C.). Biden won the 2020 Democratic primary in South Carolina after Clyburn endorsed him, a victory largely credited for turning around his campaign and helping him ultimately secure the nomination.
No Republicans from The Palmetto State joined Biden on his visit Thursday. Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) was “made aware” of the trip to his district, White House spokesman Andrew Bates told reporters, but it’s unclear whether he was invited to join.
Bates name-checked Wilson, Graham and Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) for touting investments from bills they voted against during a gaggle with reporters on the way to South Carolina.
“Sen. Lindsey Graham called the Inflation Reduction Act ‘a nightmare for South Carolina.’ Just two months later, he called BMW’s electric vehicles announcement ‘one of the most consequential announcements in the history of the state of South Carolina,’” Bates said.
“Wilson blasted the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law but later announced, ‘I welcome Scout Motors’ plans to invest $2 billion and create up to 4,000 jobs in South Carolina,’” he added. “Nancy Mace called Bidenomics legislation a, quote, ‘disaster,’ then welcomed a RAISE grant to Charleston.”
Earlier on Thursday, the president visited Enphase Energy and Flex, which the White House noted was the first company to successfully manufacture and commercialize the solar microinverter.