Policy and Legal

Policy and Legal

Biden Touts Accomplishments, but Misses the Mark Elsewhere

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In his State of the Union address Thursday, President Biden rightly celebrated manufacturing’s accomplishments—but he “missed the mark in several key areas,” according to NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons.

What happened: President Biden has reason to be proud when it comes to certain manufacturing-critical pieces of legislation, Timmons said, and the president touched on these in his speech.

  • “On my watch, federal projects like helping to build American roads, bridges and highways will be made … creating good-paying American jobs,” President Biden told the audience, referring to the NAM-supported Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. And “[t]hanks to my CHIPS and Science Act, the United States is investing more in research and development than ever before.”
  • The NAM has been a vocal supporter of CHIPS, which has supported large and small businesses all along the supply chain through an infusion of funds to boost much-needed domestic semiconductor production.
  • And the president stood strong with the people of Ukraine and in defense of democracy, two areas in which the NAM has been consistent and unwavering in its own support. “Overseas, Putin of Russia is on the march, invading Ukraine and sowing chaos throughout Europe and beyond. … But Ukraine can stop Putin if we stand with Ukraine and provide the weapons it needs to defend itself. That is all Ukraine is asking.”

No new taxes: But the president also laid out some wrongheaded plans for America, manufacturers and the economy, the NAM said, such as his push to raise taxes on manufacturers.

  • “If the cost of manufacturing in America is driven up by his agencies’ continued regulatory onslaught and a successful push to raise taxes, investment will be driven overseas and Americans will be driven out of work,” said Timmons, who appeared on Bloomberg’s “Balance of Power” ahead of the speech to discuss manufacturing priorities.

Protect U.S. innovation, competitiveness: In addition, the Biden administration’s push to invoke so-called “march-in” rights—which would allow it to seize the patents of any innovations it deems too highly priced in the event those patents had been developed in any part with federal money—would “rob Americans and the world of future cures and chill research into new breakthroughs across the manufacturing industry,” Timmons continued.

  • “And if President Biden continues to heap blame on pharmaceutical manufacturers, rather than reining in pharmacy benefit managers with cost-saving reforms, Americans and their employers will continue to endure rising health care costs.”

What should happen: The president and manufacturers in America “share a profound commitment to democracy and to the values that have made America exceptional,” Timmons went on.

  • A surefire way to restore faith in the democratic system is for Democrats and Republicans to prove it still works—“by delivering smart policies for the American people and by bolstering the industry that is the backbone of our economy and improves lives for all.”
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