Remarks by President Biden at Campaign Event for Virginia Gubernatorial Candidate Terry Mcauliffe | Beaufort County Now | Remarks by President Biden at Campaign Event for Virginia Gubernatorial Candidate Terry Mcauliffe

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Press Release:

Lubber Run Park  •  Arlington, VA  •  July 23  •  8:01 P.M. EDT

    THE PRESIDENT: Hello, Virginia! (Applause.) It's so great to be back. First off, it goes without saying how much I appreciate your current governor, Ralph Northam, by the way. (Applause.) Because of the hard work of the American people, we've put ourselves in a position for us to control the virus instead of it controlling us.

    Here in Virginia, COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations are down 90 percent since January. (Applause.) Fifty-four percent of your population has been fully vaccinated, eighty-two percent of your seniors — both of which are above the national average. (Applause.)

    But this pra- — this didn't happen by itself. It's due to the heroic vaccination program — one of the greatest and most complex operational challenges in American history.

    It happens when we all work together — the federal government, states, cities, the private sector, and all of Americans.

    Look, it happens when you have governors like Ralph who've been a key partner, coordinating FEMA and the National Guard to move personnel and resources around the state to get shots in arms. It happens when you're honest with people.

    You know, I know folks are watching the number of cases rising again and are wondering what it means for them. Well, here's the truth: If you're fully vaccinated, you're safer with a higher degree of protection. But if you're not vaccinated, you are not protected.

    And now — (applause) — what we have now is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. And, by the way — you know the old expression — you notice a lot of our very conservative friends have finally had an "altar call." (Laughter.) They've seen the Lord, whether it's on Fox News or whether it's the most conservative commentators or governors.

    Thank God the governor of Arkansas — excuse me, of — of Alabama — had one of the lowest vaccination rates in the country — is now — and I give — I'm genuinely complimenting her —

    AUDIENCE MEMBERS: Stop line three! Stop line three! Stop line three!

    AUDIENCE MEMBER: We love you, Joe!

    THE PRESIDENT: That's okay. That's all right. That's all right. No, no, no, no. Let — let him talk. No, let —

    AUDIENCE: (Inaudible.)

    THE PRESIDENT: That's okay. Look, this is not a Trump rally. Let them holler. No one is paying attention to them. (Applause.)

    Look, here's the point: Virtually all the COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations are today among the unvaccinated people. And I know — I know this has gotten a bit politicized, but I hope it's starting to change. It's not about red states or blue states or guys like that hollering; it's about life and it's about death.

    And I know Governor Northam is going to work like the devil to finish the job. (Applause.) Thank you, Gov.

    Look — and, of course, it's great to be with another great friend that's been around — I've been around a long time, and I've — seldom do I get to campaign for someone who I've agreed with more on basically everything. We go back all the way to roots in Syracuse, New York. (Applause.)

    I'm talking about — and before that, I'm actually talking about Dorothy. (Laughter.) Her roots don't go there, but — look, she's always been there for me and Jill when we've needed her most. She was an incredible First Lady of Virginia and she will be again. She is the very best. (Applause.)

    And, Dorothy, speaking of First Ladies, I'm Jill's husband. Jill wanted to be here tonight. But if you turn on your — if you turn on the Olympics and watch Team USA, you'll see Jill Biden standing there, cheering with them. (Applause.)

    The Japanese Prime Minister, who was — I invited him to be the first person to come to the White House — head of state — he made it real clear: He didn't want me, he wanted her to go. (Laughter.) He is a man of incredible judgment.

    Look, folks, now, of course, it's great to be with my friend and your once and future governor, Terry McAuliffe. (Applause.)

    I mean this — think about this —

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    AUDIENCE: Terry! Terry! Terry!

    THE PRESIDENT: You got it. You're not going to find anyone — I mean anyone — who knows how to get more done for Virginia than Terry. That's a fact. You don't have to wonder what kind of governor Terry will be; you know what kind of governor he was and what kind of governor he'll be again.

    He was a great governor of Virginia, and he'll be even greater this time because he even has more going for him. And, Virginia, you got to elect him again. (Applause.) You got to elect him again.

    And I mean this: not just for Virginia, but for the country. The country is looking. These off-year elections, the country is looking. This is a big deal.

    Terry and I share a lot in common. I ran against Donald Trump, and so is Terry. (Laughter and applause.) And I whipped Donald Trump in Virginia and so will Terry. (Applause.)

    I tell you what, the guy Terry is running against is an acolyte of Donald Trump, for real. I mean, it's just like — I don't know where these guys come from. (Laughter.) I really mean it.

    But above all, Terry and I — Terry, we share the same vision about delivering results and, maybe most importantly, why we got involved in politics in the first place. The very wealthy — and I respect anybody who makes a lot of money; you should be able to be a millionaire or billionaire, whatever you want, as long as you pay your fair share. But here's the deal — (applause) — they don't need me to protect them.

    I got involved in politics because the neighborhood I came from, the towns I came from — Scranton and Claymont, Delaware — little steel town — delivering results for hardworking people, who, if you just give them a chance — (applause) — just a chance, they never, never let the country down. (Applause.)

    You know — I really mean that. That's not — that's not hyperbole. I really mean it. Just, look — I've been in office now for six months, as of a couple days ago. (Applause.) And I think — I think the administration has a lot to be proud of.

    We've vaccinated over 160 million Americans. (Applause.) We've created over three million new jobs — more than any administration has in the first six months in entire presidential history. (Applause.) Never has it happened before.

    We eliminated — what we're on — we're now estimated to be on track — the economy, not growing before the recession, before COVID, said the economy would grow — it would be three, three and a half percent. Now everything from the OECD to all Wall Street suggests that we're going to grow this economy 7 percent just this year. (Applause.) That is the highest growth in more than four decades in America. In fact, it's the best job growth in the world right now. (Applause.)

    And in just the past few weeks, one of the biggest tax cuts in the history for families in American with kids went into effect this last week. (Applause.)

    I've been saying — I really mean this — it's about time ordinary, hardworking people get a tax break. (Applause.) Because that's what it is. Parents should see that money going into their bank accounts right now. And let me tell you what it's going to mean for Americans: We're going to cut child poverty in half this year because of that. (Applause.)

    Look, Terry and I share the same basic truth: Trickle-down economies never work. It's time to build the economy from the bottom up and the middle out. That's where we are. (Applause.)

    And, by the way, the wealthy have never done poorly when the middle-class and the working-class people do well — they do well.

    Look, Terry understands that it started with the American Rescue Plan that's delivering immediate relief to the folks who needed it most — folks who were on the back of their — on heels, a lot of them knocked down.

    [ ... ]

    Read the full transcript HERE.



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