President Joe Biden made an official visit to New Jersey this afternoon, first touring East End Elementary in North Plainfield before delivering remarks in Kearny and breaking ground on the new Portal North Bridge.
“Today, we are moving forward on a new bridge so that it will be higher over the water, so it won’t need to open and close, and allow us to increase speed, safety, efficiency, and capacity,” Biden said in a statement. “It’s going to make life a lot better for New Jersey’s commuters.”
The president also took time during his speech in Kearny to promote the two bills currently under negotiation in Congress, the bipartisan infrastructure bill and the social spending-focused Build Back Better plan.
“This initiative is about betting on America, and about believing in America,” Biden said. “Given half a chance, the American people have never, ever, ever let their country down. So let’s get this done.”
And though the event was formally labeled as an official visit and not a campaign one, Biden made sure to compliment Gov. Phil Murphy as a pioneer of progressive policy and governance.
“Governor Murphy, so many of the national challenges we’re confronting are areas where you’re already leading, and that’s not hyperbole,” Biden said. “Whether it’s making health care or preschool or college more affordable, providing paid family leave, replacing lead in pipes, and protecting public health – thanks for showing the way, pal.”
Biden’s visit follows that of own Democratic predecessor, former President Barack Obama, who came to Newark on Saturday. Unlike today’s presidential event, however, Obama’s visit was a political one on behalf of Murphy.