President Joe Biden, center, listens to farm owners Jeff and Gina O’Connor, first and second from left, during a tour of OC Farm in Kankakee on Wednesday. Also attending were Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and U.S. Rep. Robin Kelly.
President Joe Biden praised American farmers as “the breadbasket of democracy” and union workers for “building the middle class” Wednesday during a daylong trip to Illinois that stretched from rural Kankakee County to downtown Chicago.
It was part an effort to drum up support for his administration’s efforts to tackle rising inflation and to tout the work he’s already done for the middle class. The president was also scheduled to help round up big dollars for Democrats at a private fundraiser in Chicago.
In Kankakee, Biden sought to focus farmers’ anger on Russian President Vladimir Putin, arguing that “Putin’s war” is the source of many their troubles.
In Chicago, an animated Biden — the president mostly walking around with a mic instead of standing still behind a podium — detailed his infrastructure plan’s creation of jobs for union workers at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers’ International Convention.
He also urged Congress to pass the PRO Act — aimed at protecting the right to workers to organize, emphasizing the muscle of organized labor in the country.
“You literally built this country, every investment,” Biden told the union members. “If you all went on strike nationwide, the country would shut down.”
The president, who has been heavily leaning on unions to help reinvigorate support in his presidency, said he wouldn’t have won the election without organized labor.
“You’re the reason I’m standing here today as president,” he said to applause.
President Joe Biden speaks at the 40th International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) International Convention at McCormick Place on Wednesday.
IBEW president Lonnie Stephenson called Biden, the first president to speak at the union’s convention, “the most pro-union president in American history.” He lauded Biden for his continued efforts to support unions, saying “union isn’t a word that he’s ever afraid of using.”
“He has our back, and we have his,” Stephenson said.
Biden’s third presidential visit to Illinois came just hours after the release of April inflation numbers, which showed the rate changed minimally between March and April, …read more
Source:: Chicago Sun Times
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