Presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden is increasing his public focus on the economy as concerns mount about jobs and economic recovery amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The former vice president will deliver remarks Tuesday in which he will outline his plan to rebuild the economy with a focus on clean energy and green jobs.
The appearance is part of a larger effort to take advantage of current events to shift the campaign focus to the economy, arguably one of President Trump’s strongest arguments for re-election.
Speaking Monday night to donors, Biden remarked that climate change was not only an “existential threat to humanity,” but could be “the very answer to get us out of this economic situation we’re in.”
In the coming weeks, the Biden campaign will roll out two initiatives to support economic growth and recovery, according to The Hill.
The outlet reports that Biden plans to offer a proposal on making child care more affordable and one focused on advancing racial equity across the nation.
Asked by the New York Times during a call with several journalists Monday if he was comfortable having a more ambitious agenda than former President Barack Obama, Biden said yes.
“I do think we’ve reached a point, a real inflection in American history. And I don’t believe it’s unlike what [Franklin] Roosevelt was met with. I think we have an opportunity to make some really systemic change,” Biden said.
Biden’s platform, which calls for investment in environmentally friendly products and backs eliminating carbon emissions from power plants by 2035, has been backed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) as “a good policy blueprint that will move this country in a much-needed progressive direction and substantially improve the lives of working families throughout our country.”
He has also touted Biden’s agenda as one that would make him “the most progressive president since FDR.”
Biden’s campaign has been shifting toward a larger economic focus since mid-May, when the former vice president’s team began arguing that the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic allowed them to effectively make the case that the economy is in bad hands under the current commander-in-chief.
The move was not entirely surprising, given where both 2020 candidates stand on current issues and with voters.
Through his economic recovery-focused coronavirus strategy, Trump is betting that financial concerns will overtake health anxieties by late summer, making it more prudent to focus on reopening.
Biden, meanwhile, has argued that the economy won’t bounce back until people feel safe enough to go back to work.
He is expanding his economic argument as part of the unveiling of a $700 billion “Buy American” jobs plan, which focuses on economic recovery through “green” job creation in the manufacturing and clean energy sectors.
Speaking on Thursday in Dunmore, Pennsylvania, while unveiling the plan, the Democratic presidential hopeful argued that he was the one best positioned to shepherd in a new economy.
“During this crisis, Donald Trump has been almost singularly focused on the stock market, the Dow and the Nasdaq. Not you. Not your families,” the former vice president said at a manufacturing plant.
“If I am fortunate enough to be elected president, I’ll be laser-focused on middle-class families, the working-class families like where I came from in Scranton,” he continued.
Biden allies have also argued that his past work handling the implementation of the $787 billion economic stimulus package in 2009 should be brought up more by the former VP, according to the New York Times.
Biden has only mentioned the stimulus package briefly on the 2020 trail, but the paper reports that there is broad agreement on the campaign that his work at the time had a positive impact “on an economy in free fall.”
Currently, Biden relies on a small group of liberal economists and others with ties to the Obama White House and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign to provide him with economic counsel.
A Biden campaign spokesperson did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.