WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – President Joe Biden’s executive action blitz continued Monday afternoon with one aimed at pushing the “Buy American” agenda he promised during his campaign.
The directive’s goal is to boost government purchases from U.S. manufacturers.
“Made in America,” Biden emphasized at the signing.
While it may sound like the words of his predecessor, President Biden promised his latest executive order will bring jobs back to the U.S.
“The previous administration didn’t take it seriously enough,” Biden said. “Federal agencies waived the Buy American requirement without much pushback at all.”
President Biden’s order would make it harder for government contractors to qualify for a waiver to sell foreign-made goods to federal agencies. The president said transparency in this process, publicly posting who receives the waivers, would also increase opportunities for small businesses and minority-owned companies.
“To rebuild the backbone of America: manufacturing, unions, the middle class,” Biden said.
More than half a million Americans have lost their factory jobs amid the pandemic. During a press briefing Monday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the order directs the $600 billion in taxpayer dollars the government spends on federal contracts every year to support domestic manufacturing and hiring.
“The president is already making good on his commitment to building a future that is made in America by all of America’s workers,” Psaki said.
Democrats plan to reintroduce similar legislation this week, but Republicans have warned these efforts would disrupt vital pandemic supply chains, like pharmaceuticals and medical supplies.
At the executive order signing, President Biden also pledged to replace the federal government’s fleet of vehicles with American-made electric cars.