PORTSMOUTH, N.H. — President Biden hit the Granite State to pump his $1.2 trillion funding in infrastructure, however lifting the masks mandate and re-election maneuvering had been additionally on the agenda.
“I don’t know yet, I’ll have to talk to my CDC,” Biden mentioned Tuesday when requested by the Herald if he’ll attraction a choose’s ruling dropping the mandate. He joined state and native leaders in Portsmouth Tuesday for a victory tour and celebration of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which he signed in November.
White House spokesperson Jen Psaki has already mentioned lifting the masks mandate was “disappointing” and that the Biden administration might want to evaluate its authorized choices earlier than responding.
That was Monday. While that evaluate is in course of — and pending a choice by Biden — the masks mandate has been lifted for airways and different modes of public transportation. The MBTA introduced Tuesday it could raise its masks mandate for trains and buses in live performance with the federal authorities.
Biden’s assertion on the mandate got here after his remarks and through his second go to to New Hampshire in six months. The president visited Woodstock in November simply after he signed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
He’s additionally eyeing a re-election marketing campaign — with a number of reviews stating he simply informed former President Barack Obama that he’s planning to run in 2024 — with New Hampshire nonetheless holding tight to its first-in-the-nation major standing.
Beneath the leaking, rusted roof of the Portsmouth Port Authority, as protesters outdoors chanted “Let’s go Brandon,” Biden mentioned that the historic $1.2 trillion funding in infrastructure modifications the way forward for ports like Portsmouth.
“This port is open for business and will be for a long time,” Biden mentioned.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, formally the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, contains over $500 billion for roads and bridges, $72 billion for clear water, $65 billion for broadband entry, and over $100 billion for rail, airport and seaport enhancements.
The Granite State, the place Biden was praised Wednesday by U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan and U.S. Reps. Annie Kuster and Chris Pappas, is about to obtain practically $1.6 billion for highway and bridge repairs and a further $126 million over the subsequent 5 years for public transportation enhancements, in response to Biden.
U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen was not in attendance.
This yr alone, Biden mentioned, New Hampshire will obtain $45 billion to assist restore roads and bridges and one other $2.3 billion for enhancements to the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.
Despite the funding, Biden acknowledged that many, particularly within the Granite State, are nonetheless struggling in a harsh financial actuality. Biden mentioned he understands the results of inflation on working households, noting that the value of gasoline and the price of eggs hit them particularly laborious.
Biden mentioned the fault for inflation lay with the pandemic, which induced provide chain shortages, and with Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose invasion of Ukraine has rocked world power markets.
Still, Biden mentioned that the nation will overcome these tough instances because it has others.
“We’re the only country in the world that comes out of every crisis that we face stronger than we’ve been,” he mentioned.
Biden was additionally requested if he can be visiting Kyiv, to which he responded that he has been to Ukraine many instances.
“More than any other president,” he mentioned.