Biden Bits: “That’s Not Who We Are”…

Biden Tweets Logo. Image by Lenny Ghoul.

President Biden Delivers Remarks @3:45 p.m. D.C., time:


Investing in America Tweet

From Tuesday…

Show more =’s billion.

From the White House…

02/20/2024:

FACT SHEET: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Announces Nearly $6 Billion for Clean Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure as Part of Investing in America Tour:

Thanks to President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda, Every U.S. State and Territory Will Receive Funding for Clean Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure

Today, Vice President Kamala Harris and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan will travel to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as part of the Administration’s Investing in America Tour to announce $5.8 billion in funding for clean water infrastructure from President Biden’s Investing in America agenda. President Biden and Vice President Harris are committed to ensuring a future where every child and family has access to clean, safe water, and today’s announcement brings the total amount of clean water funding announced by EPA from the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to $22 billion. The Infrastructure Law invests a total of over $50 billion to upgrade America’s water infrastructure, the largest investment in clean water in American history.

Over two million people in America live without running water, tens of millions more lack access to safe and reliable drinking water and sanitation, and over nine million homes, daycares, and businesses receive their water through a toxic lead pipe. Due to decades of inequitable infrastructure development and underinvestment, lack of access to clean water disproportionately affects low-income and underserved communities. President Biden and Vice President Harris believe this is unacceptable and must change. No child, no family, no teacher, and no American should lack access to clean water.

Today’s announcement delivers funding to every single state and territory in the country to expand access to clean drinking water, replace lead pipes, improve wastewater and sanitation infrastructure, and remove PFAS contamination in water. Additionally, thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, nearly half of this funding will be provided as grants or forgivable loans to disadvantaged communities, advancing President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative and ensuring that no community is left behind. Today’s announcement will build upon the progress President Biden and Vice President Harris have already made to ensure every American can access clean water. Through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Administration has launched over 1,300 drinking water and wastewater projects across the country, including projects that will replace hundreds of thousands of lead service lines. To tell the story of how these transformative projects are impacting communities across the country, EPA is launching a new Investing in America’s Water Infrastructure Storymap today.

See below for details on key progress the Administration has made delivering clean water across America:

White House.gov. 02/20/2024.

Delivering Clean Drinking Water

  • Today, EPA is announcing over $3.2 billion through the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund to expand access to clean drinking water across the country, bringing the total amount of funding announced under this category to $8.9 billion. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law invests nearly $31 billion in funding for a wide range of drinking water projects, including upgrades to water treatment plants, water distribution and piping systems, PFAS treatment, and lead pipe replacement.
  • One community benefitting from this funding is Ridgway, Colorado, where over 50,000 people rely on a single water treatment plant that is vulnerable to failure, putting their drinking water supply at risk. Through a $50 million investment from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the community will be able to build an additional treatment plant and extend service to additional communities, helping to ensure safe, reliable drinking water for the region.
  • The Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation is investing $1 billion from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to construct seven major Rural Water Projects to deliver new supplies of clean drinking water to rural communities. In addition, the Department of the Interior has awarded $160 million for the Arkansas Valley Conduit, a planned 230-mile water pipeline that will deliver clean water to 50,000 people in southeastern Colorado whose groundwater supplies may be contaminated with radionuclides. The project was initially authorized by President John F. Kennedy in 1962 and has now finally accelerated construction under the Biden-Harris Administration, with the first pipeline breaking ground and construction contracts awarded for multiple new segments in the past year.
  • The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative – the largest investment in the Great Lakes in two decades – received $1 billion from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to help provide healthy ecosystems and safe drinking water for the 20 million Americans who rely on the Great Lakes. The program will completely restore eleven highly contaminated sites in the Great Lakes, three of which have already broken ground. Projects include the Milwaukee Estuary in Wisconsin and Cuyahoga River in Ohio, which have received a combined $415 million in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding to clean up millions of cubic yards of contaminated sediment.

Replacing Lead Pipes

  • The general-purpose drinking water funding announced today can also be used to replace toxic lead pipes, accelerating progress towards the President’s goal of replacing every lead service line in the country.
  • The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also includes a historic $15 billion in dedicated funding for lead pipe replacement. To date, EPA has announced $6 billion of this funding, which will help replace hundreds of thousands of lead pipes. EPA will announce additional lead pipe replacement funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure for 2024 in the coming months.
  • Since Vice President Harris last visited Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in June 2022 to highlight the importance of replacing lead pipes and securing clean water access, the city has received $42 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for lead pipe replacement, helping Pittsburgh towards its goal of replacing 100% of its lead pipes by 2026.
  • In November 2023, EPA proposed updates to the Lead and Copper Rule that require water systems to replace lead service lines within 10 years. EPA is also financing major lead pipe replacement projects through its WIFIA (Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act) loan program. EPA announced low-interest loans of $340 million to the City of Philadelphia and $336 million to the City of Chicago to replace tens of thousands of lead pipes while creating thousands of jobs.
  • The Administration’s Get the Lead Out (GLO) Initiative – launched in November 2023 as a part of the President’s goal of replacing all lead service lines within a decade – establishes a partnership with 200 underserved communities nationwide to provide the technical assistance they need to access federal funding and remove lead service lines from their communities. This initiative builds on EPA and the Department of Labor’s partnership with 40 underserved communities to support lead pipe replacement.

Improving Wastewater and Sanitation Infrastructure

  • Today, EPA is announcing over $2.6 billion through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund for a range of projects to improve wastewater, sanitation, and stormwater infrastructure, bringing the total funding announced for this purpose to $7 billion. Inadequate wastewater or sanitation systems put communities’ health at risk, and in total, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law invests nearly $13 billion in wastewater funding to expand and upgrade these critical systems across the country.
  • Last week, EPA announced an expansion of its successful Closing America’s Wastewater Access Gap Community Initiative to help an additional 150 underserved communities plan wastewater projects and access funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Through the pilot of this initiative, EPA and the U.S. Department of Agriculture have been assisting 11 communities since 2022.
  • One member of the Wastewater Access Gap initiative is Lowndes County, Alabama, where roughly 90% of households have failing wastewater systems and many children and families are exposed to raw sewage in their own backyards. Through the program, EPA and USDA have worked with the Lowndes County community of White Hall to secure over $500,000 in federal funding for wastewater projects to date. In the Lowndes County community of Hayneville, EPA has awarded a 100% forgivable $8.7 million loan to address failing or non-existent wastewater systems in 650 homes.
  • Since President Biden took office, the Indian Health Service in the Department of Health and Human Services has allocated $1.4 billion in funding from the Infrastructure Law to over 650 projects to build sanitation infrastructure in Tribal communities.

 Cleaning Up PFAS Pollution in Water

  • The funding announced today includes over $1 billion dedicated to addressing emerging contaminants like PFAS, bringing the total funding announced for emerging contaminants to nearly $5 billion. PFAS “forever chemicals” can be present in drinking water or wastewater and contribute to a variety of harmful health impacts, including developmental challenges in children and increased risk of cancer. In total, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law invests $10 billion to help communities build new treatment systems to remove PFAS pollution. Additionally, thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, 100% of funding to remove emerging contaminants like PFAS will be provided as grants or forgivable loans, greatly reducing barriers for all communities with PFAS contamination.
  • One community benefitting from this funding is the city of Tucson, Arizona, where drinking water supplies have been stressed by both drought and the pollution of drinking water wells by harmful PFAS and other chemicals. Through a $33.5 million forgivable loan, the city will build a new drinking water treatment facility to eliminate these contaminants and restore clean drinking water for the community.

Remarks by Vice President Harris on Delivering Clean Water for Every American | Pittsburgh, PA; the YouTube is 20 minutes and 9 seconds long.


Bipartisan National Security Bill Tweet

From Tuesday…

The video clip 2 minutes and 3 seconds long.

An attack on one is an attack on All. That’s what NATO’s Article 5 says. It’s a simple but powerful concept and it embodies why one of America’s greatest sources of strengths is our alliances. They’re not only important to us. They’re important to the rest of the world.

In the entire history of NATO, Article 5 has only been invoked once–to stand with the United States of America after we were attacked on 9/11.

The whole world knows if any adversary were to attack us, our NATO allies would have our back. And they know we would have their backs, as well.

That’s why what the former President said is so dangerous. He said he would encourage Russia to–and I quote–“do whatever the hell they want” end of quote. A statement heard around the world that does nothing but encourage bad behavior.

After Putin’s most fierce opposition leader–Alexei Navalny–died in a Russian prison last week, the former President, Trump, and other Republicans refused to hold Putin accountable for his death. Instead, Trump said Navalny’s death made him realize how bad America is. He said, and I quote–“we are a nation in decline– a failing nation” end of quote.

Why does Trump always blame America?

Putin is responsible for Navalny’s death.

Why can’t Trump just say that?

Putin is responsible.

We have to stand up to Putin and pass the national bipartisan bill, the national security bill, supporting Ukraine as they defend themselves against Putin’s vicious onslaught.

The Senate has already acted. It’s time for the House to act now because the votes are there. The Speaker needs to call a vote and abide by the will of the House. A clear majority supports what the Senate supports.

So we can stand with Ukraine and send them the supplies they need to defend themselves and prove to the world once more–America can be relied on. We stand strong with our allies. We have to remember who we are. We are the United State of America. We keep our commitments. We never walk away from our friends. And we sure as hell don’t bow down to Vladimir Putin.

Twitter.com @POTUS. 02/20/2024.

From Shape.Nato.Int…

In my googling to add context to President Biden’s video, I found a link to Invoking Article 5; there’s a short YouTube intro followed by words about the podcast. They also provided several links including one to a 7 minute and 24 second long YouTube entitled: NATO and the days after 9/11.

Twice Impeached 45’s encouraging Russia to do “whatever the hell they want” quote…

Twice Impeached 45’s “We are a nation in decline, a failing nation” quote…

And yesterday, not included in President Biden’s words…

From Wednesday…


SAVE Plan Tweet

From Wednesday…

FACT SHEET: President Biden Cancels Student Debt for more than 150,000 Student Loan Borrowers Ahead of Schedule:

Today, President Biden announced the approval of $1.2 billion in student debt cancellation for almost 153,000 borrowers currently enrolled in the Saving on a Valuable Education (SAVE) repayment plan. The Biden-Harris Administration has now approved nearly $138 billion in student debt cancellation for almost 3.9 million borrowers through more than two dozen executive actions. The borrowers receiving relief are the first to benefit from a SAVE plan policy that provides debt forgiveness to borrowers who have been in repayment after as little as 10 years and took out $12,000 or less in student loans. Originally planned for July, the Biden-Harris Administration implemented this provision of SAVE and is providing relief to borrowers nearly six months ahead of schedule.

From Day One of his Administration, President Biden vowed to fix the student loan system and make sure higher education is a pathway to the middle class – not a barrier to opportunity. Already, the President has cancelled more student debt than any President in history – delivering lifechanging relief to students and families – and has created the most affordable student loan repayment plan ever: the SAVE plan. While Republicans in Congress and their allies try to block President Biden every step of the way, the Biden-Harris Administration continues to cancel student debt for millions of borrowers, and is leaving no stone unturned in the fight to give more borrowers breathing room on their student loans.

Thanks to the Biden-Harris Administration’s SAVE plan, starting today, the Administration will be cancelling debt for borrowers who are enrolled in the SAVE plan, have been in repayment for at least 10 years and took out $12,000 or less in loans for college. For every additional $1,000 a borrower initially borrowed, they will receive relief after an additional year of payments. For example, a borrower enrolled in SAVE who took out $14,000 or less in federal loans to earn an associate’s degree in biotechnology would receive full debt relief starting this week if they have been in repayment for 12 years. The U.S. Department of Education (Department) identified nearly 153,000 borrowers who are enrolled in SAVE plan who will have their debt cancelled starting this week, and those borrowers will receive an email today from President Biden informing them of their imminent relief. Next week, the Department of Education will also be reaching out directly to borrowers who are eligible for early relief but not currently enrolled in the SAVE Plan to encourage them to enroll as soon as possible.

This shortened time to forgiveness will particularly help community college and other borrowers with smaller loans and put many on track to being free of student debt faster than ever before. Under the Biden-Harris Administration’s SAVE plan, 85 percent of future community college borrowers will be debt free within 10 years. The Department will continue to regularly identify and discharge other borrowers eligible for relief under this provision on SAVE.

White House.gov. 02/21/2024.

Over four million borrowers have a $0 monthly payment under the SAVE Plan

Last year, President Biden launched the SAVE plan – the most affordable repayment plan ever. Under the SAVE plan, monthly payments are based on a borrower’s income and family size, not their loan balance. The SAVE plan ensures that if borrowers are making their monthly payments, their balances cannot grow because of unpaid interest. And, starting in July, undergraduate loan payments will be cut in half, capping a borrower’s loan payment at 5% of their discretionary income. Already, 7.5 million borrowers are enrolled in the SAVE Plan, and 4.3 million borrowers have a $0 monthly payment.  

Today, the White House Council of Economic Advisers released an issue brief highlighting how low and middle-income borrowers enrolled in SAVE could see significant saving in terms of interest saved over time and principal forgiven as a result of SAVE’s early forgiveness provisions.

White House.gov. 02/21/2024.

President Biden’s Administration has approved student debt relief for nearly 3.9 million Americans through various actions

Today’s announcement builds on the Biden-Harris Administration’s track record of taking historic action to cancel student debt for millions of borrowers. Since taking office, the Biden-Harris Administration has approved debt cancellation for nearly 3.9 million Americans, totaling almost $138 billion in debt relief through various actions. This relief has given borrowers critical breathing room in their daily lives, allowing them to afford other expenses, buy homes, start businesses, or pursue dreams they had to put on hold because of the burden of student loan debt. President Biden remains committed to providing debt relief to as many borrowers as possible, and won’t stop fighting to deliver relief to more Americans.

The Biden-Harris Administration has also taken historic steps to improve the student loan program and make higher education more affordable for more Americans, including:

White House.gov. 02/21/2024.
  • Achieving the largest increases in Pell Grants in over a decade to help families who earn less than $60,000 a year achieve their higher-education goals.
  • Fixing the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program so that borrowers who go into public service get the debt relief they’re entitled to under the law. Before President Biden took office, only 7,000 people ever received debt relief through PSLF. After fixing the program, the Biden-Harris Administration has now cancelled student loan debt for nearly 800,000 public service workers.
  • Cancelling student loan debt for more than 930,000 borrowers who have been in repayment for over 20 years but never got the relief they earned because of administrative failures with Income-Driven Repayment Plans.
  • Pursuing an alternative path to deliver student debt relief to as many borrowers as possible in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision striking down the Administration’s original debt relief plan. Last week, the Department of Education released proposed regulatory text to cancel student debt for borrowers who are experiencing hardship paying back their student loans, and late last year released proposals to cancel student debt for borrowers who: owe more than they borrowed, first entered repayment 20 or 25 years ago, attended low quality programs, and who would be eligible for loan forgiveness through income-driven repayment programs like SAVE but have not applied.
  • Holding colleges accountable for leaving students with unaffordable debts.

It’s easy to enroll in SAVE. Borrowers should go to studentaid.gov/save to start saving.


“New” from the White House…

02/20/2024:

02/21/2024:

This is an Open Thread.

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Member of the Free Press who is politically homeless and a political junkie.