President Biden visits Milwaukee to tout 'Bidenomics'

NOW: President Biden visits Milwaukee to tout ’Bidenomics’

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- President Joe Biden touted his plan for the economy in remarks that resembled a campaign speech during his trip to Milwaukee Tuesday.

The visit highlighted the attention Wisconsin is sure to receive over the next 14 months leading up to the 2024 presidential election. Republicans are hosting their first presidential primary debate at Fiserv Forum next Wednesday.

When Biden stepped foot in Milwaukee, many were waiting to meet the president, including Illinois resident Katie Canfield. 

"I think it means a lot when someone shows that they care enough to show up and actually make the trip to Wisconsin out of all states," Canfield said.

Against a backdrop of blue banners reading, "Bidenomics," the president touted several laws he's gotten signed as proof his administration can successfully create jobs.

President Biden spoke at Ingeteam Inc., which makes wind generators. Much of the president's remarks focused on clean energy investments made in the $1.2 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the $750 billion Inflation Reduction Act, which Biden signed last August.

"According to Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, my plan is leading to a boom. They called it a boom in manufacturing and manufacturing investment, as you're seeing right here in this factory. Over 13.4 million new jobs, 150,000 new jobs in the state of Wisconsin," he said.

Biden highlighted a $7.5 billion commitment to build new electric vehicle charging stations.

"Including on I-94," Biden said. "By the way, over 500,000 of those charging stations. That's real jobs. That's real money."

Biden also pointed to more traditional infrastructure projects that have been funded under his watch. The president highlighted the $80 million replacement of the bridge carrying I-90 over the Wisconsin River in Columbia County. He also noted the ongoing rehabilitation of the Holton Street bridge in Milwaukee.

One day after former President Donald Trump was indicted on state charges in Georgia connected to his role in trying to overturn the 2020 election, Biden did not mention the fourth indictment handed out against the former president in his remarks.

Biden made an indirect reference to Trump when criticizing the Republican approach to the economy.

"[My economic plan is] in stark contrast to the conservative Republican view or the so-called MAGA view," Biden said. "Which is focused on corporate profits."

Wisconsin Republicans on a press call Tuesday morning pointed to continued inflation and rising interest rates as reasons why Bidenomics are failing.

"He's asking [voters] to ignore the reality that people here in Wisconsin, that people have lived under the Biden administration," Republican Party of Wisconsin Chairman Brian Schimming said. "It's high inflation, high-interest rates."

Biden responded to the criticism by pointing to Bureau of Labor Statistics reports finding the rate of inflation has slowed in recent months. 

Conservatives maintained it's not enough. On the GOP press call, Rep. Tom Tiffany highlighted Fitch Ratings lowered the nation's credit rating for just the second time in its history.

"We have higher interest rates, we have bank failures," Tiffany said. "We have all these things that are going on as a result of this massive spending that's been going on, and it's harming Americans."

Schimming was mentioned in the Georgia indictment, and the state GOP only allowed questions to be typed in during the virtual call. After reading one question about the presidential visit, a party spokeswoman ended the call.

The party later issued a statement attributed to Schimming; it aligned with past Wisconsin GOP statements saying they only drafted a fake elector slate in case Trump's legal challenges were successful. 

The only non-economic issue Biden mentioned was the devastation caused by wildfires in Maui, which is now the deadliest wildfire event in the U.S. over the past century.

Biden laid out the upcoming federal response following criticism he received after previously declining to comment on the disaster. 

The president acknowledged times were still tough for many Americans, but he said the creation of jobs earlier this year at a pace that exceeded expectations was proof of "Bidenomics" working.

"I mean this from the bottom of my heart, I've never been more optimistic about our future," Biden said. "Both domestic and foreign. We just gotta remember who the hell we are. We're the United States of America."

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