From Infrastructure bill to the Origins of Covid, here are the 4 things you need to know about Jen Psaki’s AF1 gaggle on May 27, 2021
1. Infrastructure Bill
As Memorial Day approaches, President Biden wants to see an increase in funding for small businesses, workers, and the clean energy economy, in the Infrastructure bill.
“We have a counteroffer on the table where the number came up significantly from the prior offer, where there was an increase in proposed funding and roads, rails, and bridges. There are some areas that we would like to see more funding that we think are essential to the American workforce,” said Psaki.
President Biden is closely engaged with Senator Capital’s Group and other groups to see what ideas they have to propose for the bill.
“Our counter-proposal back even as we came down $550 billion last week, that shows how much of a priority it is to the President. This is an ongoing negotiation. We’ll continue to have discussions about how to move it forward.” states Psaki.
The administration is making progress before Congress resumes on June 7.
2. January 6 Commission
As word has spread that Senate Republicans are likely to block the January 6 Commission, President Biden has made clear he wants to see the bill “continue to move this forward.” On Thursday, Psaki stated the President wants “the bipartisan commission passed, and he wants to make sure that’s law because that was a dark day in our history.” He has repeatedly made clear he wants to make sure that January 6 never happens again.
Mitch McConnell has also made very clear his opposition towards the bill. He asked Senate Republicans for a “personal favor” to vote against the January 6 Commission.
“You know, some of the people who oppose it aren’t necessarily looking for his point of view, which is very public and well known,” said Psaki.
Fallen Capitol Police Officer, Brian Sicknick’s mother and girlfriend pleaded with Senate Republicans to pass this legislation on Thursday.
Only 10 Senate Republicans need to vote in favor of the bill for it to pass.
3. Biden’s Expected Speech on the Economy
Thursday the President will deliver a speech on the economy, where he will make clear that his economic plan is working. His remarks will be at Cuyahoga Community College.
Biden will note the remarkable progress the administration has made in defeating COVID-19. “During his speech, he will make the case that his economic ivory conveyed that today’s positive GDP report is the latest proof that his policies are healing the economy and getting Americans back to work,” Psaki expressed.
The administration is creating an average of 500,000 jobs a month, which is “eight times more than before President Biden took office.” Unemployment insurance claims hit their lowest level since March of 2020. The four-week moving average of unemployment insurance claims has dropped by nearly 50% since the President took office.
Biden will discuss generational investments in the economy through the jobs plan and the family’s plan and advanced manufacturing two years of community college roads, bridges, broadband and a host of other areas that will create good-paying jobs and “help us out compete the world.”
The American jobs plan, the American rescue plan, the American families plan will put us on better financial footing over time.” said Psaki.
4. Origin of Covid Investigation
In March, the President asked his intelligence community to do an internal assessment about the origins of Covid-19. Biden has been presented, often in the President’s Daily Brief, a top-secret summary of U.S. intelligence and world events, what those assessments look like.
The President asked the Intelligence Community to see if his administration could declassify that information, and make it available to the public.
“They came back just this week with what they would propose to be a public statement happening in the backdrop of that, as you all know, was the World Health Organization, where the Chinese made clear they were not going to engage constructively in the second stage of this investigation,” stated Psaki.
Biden believed it was important to make public what the Intelligence Community had done, and that he expanded the investigation for 90 days and added more components of the federal government, including national labs, and health and medical expertise.
The Biden administration will not make any further assessments, since there are 89 days left before the review.