President Joe Biden returned to Michigan Tuesday to push his infrastructure bill package currently debated in Congress.
Flying into Lansing, the President visited a union training center in Howell where he gave his speech and pushed for support on two massive spending bills.
However, he found an angry group of protesters waiting for him not far from the site where he delivered his speech. Those opposing Biden in Howell numbered about 500, with many participating in profane chants against the president.
At one point, the protesters cheered when a green front-end loader with a “No Biden” sign traveled down the road, according to the newspaper.
Another sign in the crowd read, “Build Back Broke,” the Detroit News reported.
The Build Back Better plan comprises two parts. The infrastructure bill and the reconciliation bill are technically two separate bills that will take two separate votes but it is well known in Washington DC that the two are linked. It’s not just going to be one being passed and the other not. That just adds to the large price tag that Republicans aren’t fans of.
“We’re throwing around terms like ‘trillions’ like it’s Wednesday night poker money,” said Representative Bill Huizenga, Republican from Zeeland. The price has been negotiated up to possibly $3.5 trillion, down to maybe just $1.9 trillion.
Many in the crowd told news reporters that they don’t like the size of the Democrats’ proposed 1.5 trillion infrastructure bill or the 3.5 trillion reconciliation bill of safety-net spending that most members of Biden’s party hope to pass as a package.
Many people spoke up and voiced their opinions during the and after President Biden’s speech. ”The money has to come from somewhere,” protester Londa Gatt told FOX 2. “You can’t keep printing it.”
“I think this is reflective of how upset people in everyday America are, when you leave the Washington bubble, about the spending going on in Washington, D.C.,” Meghan Reckling, chair of the Livingston County Republicans in Michigan, told FOX 2 about the turnout of protesters.
The President says the bills strengthen America while Republicans say it buries the country in debt.
“To support these investments is to create a rising America,” said Biden, “An America that is moving. To oppose these investments is to be complacent in America’s decline.”
“You can’t spend money on everything, that’s the problem,” said Rep. Huizenga, “I mean, trust me, government has no problem spending money. The question is are we going to be able to limit it to those things?”
Many were suspicious and came up with theories on why Biden even came to speak in Howell.
“The easy answer is, he is probably trying to boost Slotkin and give her some props,” Meshawn Maddock, co-chair of the Michigan Republican Party, told a reporter, referring to Democratic U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin, who will be up for reelection in 2022. “I think it is a clear indication of where Slotkin is going to be on this (infrastructure) vote.”
“Slotkin is not the moderate she said she was,” Republican Paul Junge, Slotkin’s 2020 opponent, said at the demonstration, according to the Detroit News. “The people of this district are going to see it and vote her out. I intend to be that alternative.”
“Sleepy Joe thinks that this is sleepy little Howell and it’s not,” protester Jackie Ludwig told the Detroit News.
“We just want Biden to know we’re not happy with his spending,” Ludwig’s husband, Philip Ludwig, added. “We’re not happy with the way our country’s going and the job he’s performing. And we would like him to step down.”
Biden’s visit to Michigan came amid a drop in his approval ratings, both in Michigan and around the nation, the Free Press reported.
He was joined in Howell by Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, and most of the state’s congressional Democrats, according to the paper.
It was Biden’s first visit to Michigan since July 3, the Detroit News reported.