Sec. Buttigieg explains American Jobs Plan impact on North Dakota & Minnesota
WASHINGTON (KVRR) – President Joe Biden has ended negotiations with top Republican leaders regarding his American Jobs Plan, but the administration will continue seeking bipartisan approval of the infrastructure proposal.
According to the White House, infrastructure in North Dakota and Minnesota has suffered from a lack of investment for decades.
Between the two states, more than 5,000 miles of highways are in poor condition.
The top priorities include aging roads and bridges, but Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says the President’s expansive plan doesn’t stop there.
“It is every kind of infrastructure we count on,” Buttigieg explained in an interview with KVRR Wednesday. “Getting rid of lead pipes, which is important in the Midwest. Getting broadband out to everybody, which is certainly an issue in many rural areas of North Dakota and Minnesota.”
President Biden canceled the Keystone XL Pipeline operation months ago, and Buttigieg says the President continues to stand by his decision for the sake of a “future-looking” energy policy.
“We got to make sure that we manage this in a way that makes America safer and stronger and faces the reality of climate in a way that will create more jobs. Remember, independent analysts believe that the American Jobs Plan will create millions of jobs and importantly, most of them don’t require a college degree,” Buttigieg said.
On Tuesday, President Biden ended his talks with Senate Republicans initially intended to help reach a bipartisan deal.
When asked about his response to Sen. Kevin Cramer saying President Biden ending the bipartisan infrastructure negotiations is a ‘slap in the face’ to bipartisanship, Buttigieg said: “The President is continuing to speak with members on both sides of the aisle, and so am I. Unfortunately, the group that we’ve been talking to for the last few weeks just wasn’t willing to come to a level that the President thinks is necessary in order for America to meet the challenge.”
If President Biden’s plan is passed, Buttigieg says job creation will be one of the biggest benefits to North Dakotans and Minnesotans.
“With those jobs, and remember, the majority of them you don’t have to have a college degree for, this is really a blue-collar vision for the future, but with those jobs come better assets, better roads and better bridges, and just the knowledge that America’s leading the way again,” Buttigieg added.
The American Jobs Plan also proposes using billions of dollars to invest in affordable housing, safe drinking water, and childcare.