MARCH 27, 2021 • SPEECHES AND REMARKS
(March 26, 2021)
5:37 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: Well, look, Mayor — can you hear me now? I truly apologize to everybody, especially on a Friday afternoon, as the Mayor said.
I want to thank the Mayor for her leadership, and more importantly, I want to thank her for her friendship. And for everyone on this call, you should know that Keisha endorsed me, as I said, very early in my campaign, back when most folks didn’t think I had a chance. She stuck with me when things were bad and (inaudible). But through it all, she believed in me, and I’m forever grateful.
But maybe the person I should be thanking most is Keisha’s mom. Keisha often tells me stories about how her best polling source is her mom, and what her mom is hearing about at the bridge club every Saturday.
Well, when Keisha’s mom said she believed in me, I guess that was good enough for Keisha. And just like she had my back, I have hers.
And we need her, and Atlanta needs her. You know, we saw it just weeks after — just weeks after we found ourselves (inaudible) to the mass shooting. When the Vice Pres- — when I — when the Vice President and I traveled to Atlanta, we met with the Mayor and saw her strength keeping the city together, especially for the Asian Amer- — the Asian American community that remains in fear and is hurting right now.
And we’ve seen her leadership during this pandemic — believing in science and leading a city that’s home to a tremendous public servant, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — the CDC.
We saw her stand tall and speak out during the summer of protests and pain. And during the campaign that tested our very democracy, she was always there. So many of you stepped up as well.
And if anyone ever doubted that voting matters, Georgia just proved that it did. If anyone ever wondered if one vote can make a difference, Georgia proved it 11,779 times. And if anyone ever wondered if voting can change a country, Georgia just proved that. And if you’re wondering whether Republican officials will finally stop their attacks on the right to vote and actually try and win over votes, they just proved yesterday they won’t. It’s (inaudible) America and what they’re doing — that it cannot stand
So, above all, Keisha knows democracy is not just about winning elections. It’s about governing, making government work. It’s about making government work for working families, for the people who are — who are the backbone of this country.
And that’s why we fought so hard to pass the American Rescue Plan. It’s making a difference.
Just last week, we passed 100 million shots in arms in the first 58 days in office. We’re going to get (inaudible) 200 million in my first 100 days. That includes a $10 billion investment to make sure we reach the hardest-hit and highest- risk communities.
And, yesterday, we reached 100 million checks for $1,400 into people’s pockets and their bank accounts. By the time this money is distributed, 88 percent of all adults and children in Georgia will receive such a check. That’s going to change their lives.
The American Rescue Plan will cut child poverty literally in half, including for 171,000 Georgia children. It provides $4 billion for Georgia’s schoolchildren, in grades K through 12, to keep them open and keep them open safely.
And one of the biggest things for Georgia and the Atlantic — and Atlanta: Georgia is now eligible for about $2 billion in expanded Medicaid. That means another 500,000 Georgians will be covered all across the state with Medicaid that they don’t have right now. And that’s on top of the lower premiums and expanded coverage, if you have a plan through Obamacare.
Your state — the state of Georgia — will also get around $5 billion to make up for the lost revenues. Local governments will get around $3.5 billion.
That’s going to make it possible to keep police officers, firefighters, teachers, first responders on the job, rather than have to lay them off because of a lack of funding.
And who is going to deliver this help on the ground? The Mayor. The Mayor. But that’s just the beginning.
And as we rescue the economy in the coming weeks, I’ll be laying out my vision for a Build Back Better plan to rebuild America’s own 21st century, modernizing our infrastructure — our transportation systems, our broadband systems, our water and power systems.
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