Biden, who consulted with the CEOs of Walmart, Target, FedEx and UPS on Tuesday, plans to emphasize that these investments are part of a national effort to relieve supply chain bottlenecks in ways that can aid broader growth.
When he was in the White House, Donald Trump referred to Baltimore as a “disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess.” But for President Joe Biden, the city is the first stop Wednesday in what probably will be a national tour to showcase his agenda.
At the Port of Baltimore, Biden plans to lay out the benefits of the $1 trillion infrastructure package that Congress passed last week. The president intends to emphasize how the spending can strengthen global supply chains to help lower prices, reduce shortages and add union jobs, according to a White House official.
Biden plans to hold up Baltimore’s port as a blueprint on how to reduce shipping bottlenecks that have held back the economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. The infrastructure package includes $17 billion for upgrading ports — an urgent need as a backlog of ships waiting to dock at major transit hubs has fueled inflation and damaged public perceptions of Biden’s economic stewardship.
The port in Baltimore is adding container cranes as well as a 50-foot berth where ships can be unloaded. Baltimore’s port is also benefiting from grants to upgrade the Howard Street Tunnel, a brick-lined underpass for trains that opened in 1895. The tunnel would be expanded so that shipping containers could be double-stacked on railcars, making it easier to move goods out of the port.
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