U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg welcomed the opportunity to highlight elements of the new $1 trillion infrastructure deal agreed to by Congress last week, describing it as “a big deal.”
Watch Buttigieg’s remarks in the player above.
Buttigieg said the infrastructure bill “couldn’t come at a more urgent time,” as he listed conditions across the country that will be impacted to reporters in the White House briefing on Monday.
President Joe Biden took a victory lap Saturday after his infrastructure bill cleared the Congress, notching a hard-fought win on a $1.2 trillion piece of legislation that he says will tangibly improve Americans’ lives in the months and years to come.
The Democratic president called it a “a once-in-a-generation investment” to tackle a range of challenges — crumbling roads and bridges, gaps in access to affordable internet, water tainted by lead pipes, homes and cities ill-prepared to cope with increasingly frequent extreme weather conditions.
Passage of the legislation was a respite from a challenging few months for an embattled president whose poll numbers have dropped as Americans remain frustrated with the coronavirus pandemic and an uneven economic recovery.
In an effort to correct past messaging mistakes, the White House is planning an aggressive sales campaign for the infrastructure bill, with Biden planning trips across the U.S. to speak about the impacts of the legislation.
Biden will visit a port in Baltimore on Wednesday and promises a splashy signing ceremony for the infrastructure bill when legislators are back in town.
“A lot of this sells itself because communities never needed to be persuaded that their bridge needed to be fixed or that their airport needs an upgrade, or that their ports needed investment,” Buttigieg told reporters. “They’ve been trying to get Washington to catch up to them.”